Wars At Our Window

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One snowy morning can
speak volumes.

Cold pollutes and blizzards
play but one
flute in
a wind section of
tectonic pessimism.

The china rattles, the
plates have shifted.

Fault lines miss their targets completely
and just as easily go
to battle with an enemy’s proxy.

And I hear
currents talking to me in
tones they’ve never taken.

It seems
this time, there’s no
eleventh hour
reconciliation;
an armistice
with anger, nor a treaty
made in faith.

Man your battle stations, men.

We’re here until
the world’s end, and
a continent lies in flame.

There was a time I let
bombs sway me, days I
saw humanity’s darkest
elements outweigh
its benevolence.

And though I knew
of hopelessness before
I could even spell it,

sometimes it takes
looking outside
at a war
you’d much
rather not begin to
explore the consequences
of;

sometimes it takes mud and
trenches and bodies
and blood,
conscription and trickery,
letters home
of misery, of homesickness
and love to seal the
possibility you won’t
step foot on your
native soil
again.

I’ve seen this end (in a strictly metaphorical sense). I’ve waved the white flag before a friend could pull my arm down. I’ve wondered aloud how a spirit so proud and fierce and agile is reduced to the fears of a child, how purgatory can have so many different stories, yet it all ends on identical notes.

I couldn’t see it
when I was ill,
or even until I peered
beyond my quartered window
that I knew,

this war is on
our doorstep, and it may spare only
the few of its

everlasting sickness.

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