third anniversary of war
It was a full moon three years ago as I drove down the highway crying, thinking of Salam Pax. These days I still think of him, but every day wonder about Riverbend and her family… Jeremy, of Daddy Dialectic and othermag, asked me to post something as a parent on the anniversary of the U.S. bombing of Baghdad.
moon veil your mirror
March 19, 2003
Moon, sky-hook, when I turn to you
my face is turned away from my mother.
My face is turned away from my mother.
I want to forget I am part of this world.
I want to forget I am part of this world,
so I can become round enough to pity the dust.
Future light won’t shine here.
Future light won’t shine here,
because the wheel of stars will dip below
a housing development conveniently named ‘Purgatory’,
built where teenage boys wake up
handcuffed with their black bandanas.
Moon, breathe the atmosphere of sorrow,
suck it from my dying mouth
as I prepare to put out the light,
because what you are about to see is blood.
What you are about to see is blood.
Turn your face away
if you aren’t strong enough
and for a moment I’ll look for you
long enough to put out the light,
because teenage boys like thin colts
veiled in ash & black bandanas
nerve their legs and put out the stars in their eyes,
preparing for that day when no light will shine.
That’s why they can stare at the sun
while I can only look at you, moon.
Because I don’t have any blood to give.
I’ve bought too many telescopes
in my housing development coincidentally named "The Shadows".
I don’t have any blood to give.
I’ve bought too many telescopes that fold up like ice
and they’ll endure until licked away by a cow’s warm tongue.
shutter your face
to cut out the harsh light, the violent light.
Wear a black bandana
because a silver lamb unfolds from your pocket like a sailing ship.
Because you can’t close your eyes,
I’ll give you my black veil.
veil your mirror,
because my eyes have been defiled.
Because my eyes have been defiled
by the future of my country,
because the light gathered by you and thrown back in our faces
has seen the blood that I can’t bleed or see,
because of that, I’ll look, though I have no tears to give,
because my tears are gathering dust in a gallon jug
under the sink, where I keep my lambs and my telescopes,
where I keep my mirror, and the ruins of the Golden Gate Bridge,
and a cow’s hoof, and a ship in a bottle.
technorati tags: poetry, war, parenthood, antiwar, testimony,