Tag Archives: war

DESCEND

I saw peace in the form of a dove descending,
Peace, sent from above, being offered to all people, including me.
“Who wants peace?” I asked. I was sure all would agree.
“Not me,” I heard over and over again.
“We don’t want peace when there’s a chance to win!”
A dark cloud began to descend. Lightning flashed and a storm began.
“And if we lose?” I asked.
“You are a pessimist!” someone shouted. “Let the wars begin!”
I fell on my face, as did many of other languages, color, or place.
“Lord, forgive those who wage war. They don’t know what they ask.”
One bright ray came through the cloud.
“IF ONE MILLION SEEK PEACE IT WILL BE ALLOWED!”
I shook my head. The seekers of peace were few.
I already knew that peace might be through.
“Lord, how about a thousand who want peace?”
A bolt of lightning, then thunder shook the ground.
This should be easy. I’m sure a thousand are around.
But war was the topic of the day.
“We will win this war quickly,” I heard people say.
“Lord, how about a measly ten?”
But people were already making their choice.
They spoke of the good things about war and of the same voice.
Dark clouds were building in the sky.
“DON’T THEY REALIZE HOW MANY WILL DIE?”
The Lord began weeping because people were keeping
their eyes and ears closed and accepting war as their reality.
I looked around. Not even ten wanting peace could be found.
Peace, which had been descending, disappeared into the clouds.
I was no longer proud.
Less than ten, and even those were beginning to bend.
“Lord, will you let me begin again?”
A new Garden of Eden where peace could restart,
Love at the center of each remaining heart,
Yet as I gazed upon the Garden, I saw the dove descend.
Just for a moment I saw a perfect world,
I gasped, “Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel!”
One small chance to choose wisely right from the start,
And I already knew Cain carried murder in his heart.
What could I do differently than this other man?
Was I willing to try harder and keep peace in my plan?
I looked up and saw the dove again.
“YOU HAVE A CHOICE.
CHOOSE LOVE AT THE BEGINNING AND PEACE WILL DESCEND.”

May 20, 2017

QUALMS

Qualms about war
He had no qualms about signing up.
After all, wasn’t war about heroes and doing right?
Many of his friends had already gone,
Eager to prove themselves and show they could fight.
He wanted to be a pilot, a hotshot ace,
Swooping down to save his fellow soldiers,
A hero from outer space.
The recruiter had told him many lies,
About the country he could save,
But he discovered there was another story,
And it haunted him to his grave.
Given an assignment to attack the enemy,
Flying high, flying low, over the jungles he flew.
Below him in a lonesome valley,
Was a village he loved and knew.
Before he went he asked a question,
Although he knew he had a duty to fill,
“Was this village the saints or sinners”,
But he should have no qualms to kill.
After the war he went back,
Hoping to make amends,
But peace was still uneasy,
Bullets don’t make good friends.
The body count made him a hero,
But his dreams kept him awake.
And one beautiful day in October,
He chose his life to take.
May 16, 2017

A LAMB WITH GOLDEN FLEECE

A LAMB WITH GOLDEN FLEECE

And lo, I saw a lamb with golden fleece,
Asking for reason, pleading for peace.
I asked my friends, “What does this mean?”
No one could describe what they’d never seen.
The lamb’s eyes were bleeding, swollen and raw,
There must be danger in something she saw.
From the mountains came a man from the East,
With a fierce countenance, and the mark from the beast.
The man asked, “What would it take for a war to start?”
He saluted and said, “I’m ready to blow this world apart!”
I thought about that as I traveled towards the sun,
He was right. The world’s troubles have just begun.
It only takes one crazed leader to light the fuse.
He could be already well-known and all over the news.
The lamb was quiet and then she said,
“Why do you ignore me? Do you wish to be dead?
Three large countries are ready to expand,
Where will they get their new-found land?
Will they destroy the people who live there now?
Will you defend the weak and helpless somehow?
The rules of war say be cautious, you can’t use gas,
Or other weapons of destruction, the threats will pass.
But I know your hearts,” the lamb said sadly.
“Nuclear bombs will be used, and the war will end badly.”
I could see in her eyes how the war would unfold,
Countless men lying on the ground, lifeless and cold.
And the deaths will include mothers, daughters and sons,
No one will be safe until the carnage is done.
There is one final chance for the world to have peace.”
She walked into the sunset in a blaze of golden fleece.
But I heard her words of wisdom coming from high above,
I listened then and thought she said, “It’s all about love.
We must speak up now. Every person must have a voice.
It’s now or never. We have no other choice!”

I’m only a poet trying to make sense of what I see.
I’m not ready for Armageddon and I hope you agree,
We can learn to share the world; it’s not too small for me.
We can’t ignore it much longer unless it’s meant to be.
May 15, 2017

HOW CAN I SLEEP TONIGHT?

If I ignore the plight of two hundred girls,

Leaving them in the jungle with no hope,

How can I look myself in the eye tonight?

If I see thousands of children starving,

Caught in the throes of war and plight,

How can I sleep tonight?

Their eyes accuse me, each and all,

While I eat until I’m sated,

Extra pounds gained but really hated.

My clothes have shrunk and are very tight,

How can I sleep tonight?

Political refugees, sexual refugees,

Economic refugees, and more,

Let’s squash their hopes and close the door.

Let’s build tall fences to stop those fleeing,

Who cares what terror they are seeing?

But how can I sleep tonight?

Nuclear bombs are at the ready,

Controlled by rulers who are sane and steady,

Powered by testosterone and ready to fight

But who are the ones who will do what’s right?

And how can I sleep tonight?

If I ignore the wounds and endless pain,

Shrugging off man’s inhumanity again,

Will the world survive to see morning’s light?

And how can I sleep tonight?

Garden of Eaten

Illustration of Peter Rabbit escaping and leav...

Illustration of Peter Rabbit escaping and leaving his jacket behind, from The Tale of Peter Rabbit (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

The Garden of Eaten

 

After last year’s dismal attempts at growing a garden I should have known better and just bought produce at the local store. It was a conspiracy right from the beginning and I didn’t anticipate the craftiness and tenacity of rabbits and ground squirrels.
I labored in the sun, lovingly and carefully placing the seeds in meticulous rows or circular formations. I did not pay close attention to the eyes that watched hungrily. I was in charge and I would maintain order as the tomatoes and cantaloupes, the beans and watermelons, and the other assorted vegetables grew in regulated patterns. In theory everything would be perfect.
At first the plants themselves did not cooperate. They grew rapidly, sprawling over cages and netting. I adjusted my watering and feeding schedules. Yes, there were timelines and soil and fertilizer mixtures prepared for each type of plant. I worked the garden methodically, expecting everything to grow exactly as I wanted. But one morning I noticed that the cantaloupe vines were lying in new directions.
I scratched my head and studied them. As I pondered, one vine stretched taut and then suddenly went limp. I walked over and examined the end of the vine. It had been sliced cleanly. Something had happened and I had missed it. I focused on a small hill and was rewarded when a pair of ears emerged, followed by a pair of dark eyes. A rabbit stared at me, apparently waiting for my next move. I could have sworn it was smiling as it casually munched on cantaloupe vines. The rabbit was either really brave or it realized I had no chance of catching it. Like a soldier preparing to march off to war, I swung my hoe up and against my shoulder. I muttered angrily, “Mister Rabbit, this means war!”
I strode purposefully towards the rabbit, but it waited until I was close. Then with three short hops it disappeared under the fence. I was fuming because the rabbit had violated my Garden of Eden, my model of perfection.
Once safe on the other side, the rabbit turned and winked. It was deliberate and mean spirited. I knew this rabbit was taunting me. He waved, but not at me. I turned around slowly. Behind me, little rabbits were munching on cantaloupe flowers and new growth. I lifted my hoe and the rabbits scattered in all directions. I was like the legendary Mr. McGregor chasing Peter Rabbit. I gave chase but I was too slow and the little rabbit wriggled under the gate and escaped.
The next few days I fixed the fence, set traps, and even put out repellent. I was determined to keep the rabbits away. Throughout the summer I waged war but it became clear I was on the losing side. With the exception of the tomatoes my garden shrank under the attack of the hungry hordes.
Each night I had nightmares about animated rabbits and ground squirrels. In these dreams rabbits and squirrels sat at a huge banquet table eating their fill while I hurried to grow more to satisfy their needs. Each rabbit and squirrel told others and soon cousins and uncles arrived from distant climes to share this feast. Rabbits appeared everywhere and thrived in spite of me. I finally capitulated and left the rabbits and squirrels alone. My dreams convinced me they were the chosen ones.
This year I’m doing things differently but that’s another story.

 

 

 

Tales From One Warm Summer Night (Part 1)

Study for The Quarrel of Oberon and Titania by...

Image via Wikipedia

My heart beat faster one warm summer night,

When four friends and I exchanged tales around a fire,

Connie leaned forward in her chair,

“There are fairies dancing there,

Around the old oak tree,

A place that’s magical for them and me,”

Her brown smoldering eyes held me still,

I searched their depths until I had my fill,

“Fairies cast spells on strangers passing through,

Using their magic to make dreams come true,”

Connie, her raven black hair shining in the moonlight,

Said, “I’ll tell you more, later in the night,”

Jim cleared his throat, glanced at the others, then at me,

“I’ll tell you a story about terror at sea,

Of pirates who changed from their plundering ways,

Experienced old salts brave and crusty as they be,

Who saved their own lives by tossing treasures into the sea,”

He paused for a moment to catch his breath,

“Then I’ll close with a ship named ‘DEATH’,”

Rhonda stood up and with a shy little grin,

“I want to tell you about heroic women and their wild, wild men,

How they conquered the West with love, tears, and sweat,

Overcame their fears and stood up to threats,”

Bill couldn’t resist telling about wars with blood and gore,

“Freedom is always worth fighting for,”

He hesitated as if he wanted his words to sink in,

“There’s a change as boys become men,

Cannons boom constantly and tanks shake their world around,

Every man becomes braver as he crosses contested ground,”

I listened and waited to share a truth that was stark,

I wanted to tell them about danger that lurked in the dark,

My story had been forgotten and I lost my chance to speak,

For growls were getting closer and my stomach was getting weak,

I gasped and stuttered but nothing they could understand,

They continued with their stories as I wrung my hands,

Connie looked at me apprehensively, as if I was mad,

“I see you’re preparing your story, but your acting is bad,”

There were murmurs of agreement as she continued her tale,

“The fairies were delighted to find one day,

A knight tired from his journey, under the oak he lay,

On his way to the castle he had fallen asleep,

His mission was to rescue a princess from the keep,

The fairies laughed, they danced, they cast a spell,

They wanted their magic to serve him well,

For he would soon face the witch and the evil queen,

Brave knights who’d gone before were never again seen,

The fairies wove a multi-colored cloak from spider webs and dew,

If he wore it at the castle it would hide him from view,

A second spell they bestowed before he awoke,

The next two he kissed would go up in smoke,”

Her story was entertaining and the fire was going out,

But Jim looked sullen and was beginning to pout,

“Go ahead, Jim,” I said, “I’ll throw more wood on the fire,

Continue your story about the treasures pirates aquire,”

Uneasily I studied the woods for the terror it contained,

While my friends shared the fire and with stories entertained,

“After a brief skirmish with one of the king’s battleships,

The pirates disappeared into the fog and gave them the slip,

They plundered the coast, found treasures to steal,

Escaped angry husbands, had rum and good meals,

The tars watched a hundred sunsets as they traveled by boat,

Then the pirates crossed the Atlantic to lands remote,

Found Spanish ships loaded with gold from the new world received,

The pirates fired their cannons and the gold relieved,

And off they sailed thinking they were safe from harm,

But a hurricane was brewing and no one sounded the alarm,”

While he gathered his breath to go on with his tale,

Rhonda couldn’t wait one minute longer,

“The men in my story were strong, but the women were stronger,

From Boston and New York the men went west,

Looking for adventure, for gold, or land at its best,

Towns sprang up overnight with guns making the law,

It was easy to be dead or quick on the draw,

The last place of civilization was named Kansas City,

Men venturing west beyond that were given no pity,

Uncivilized, untamed, life always in the rough,

If a woman dared go west she had to be tough,

She plowed by day, ran her household by candlelight,

Bore her babies at home, and fought for her rights,

In the fields or on the porch she carried a gun,

But in the bedroom at night most battles were won,

Those feisty women changed each odious law,

Against those in petticoats stubborn men would withdraw,”

“A nice history lesson, Rhonda,” Bill said, “Now it’s my turn,

There was a young man who had much about war to learn,

Both sides agreed about Christmas Day, so soldiers ceased fire,

No guns were deadly as they crossed over barbed wire,

Troops celebrated together but before the sun went down,

Soldiers took their positions and prepared for another round,

Deadly combat began early the next day,

Friends became enemies, no mercy did they display,

This young man, eighteen at most, charged a machine gun nest,

Dodged bullets as he ran, but was more scared than the rest,

He was tired of seeing his friends shot down,

So he dashed across and conquered the ground,

He didn’t want to be a hero but what else could he do,

The war was not over and his job was not through,”

Stories of fairies, heroic women, war and the sea,

Were all suspended while my friends waited for me,

All the people in these stories marched upon imagination’s stage,

Yet a few feet away, more than enough to fill a page,

There was a story ready to unfold,

About a creature hungry and bold,

Perhaps I was the only one who could see,

Those long fangs and those eyes glaring at me,

I had listened and waited and I wanted to share,

But I was transfixed by that malevolent stare,

I wanted to ask if this was but a dream,

Because if it was real, I needed to scream,

Angry Birds

Yolk

Image via Wikipedia

Angry Birds

For over a year,

There’s been increasing fear,

Birds against pigs,

Has made it big,

The birds’ survival is at stake,

And there’s a choice to make,

Revenge and lay waste,

Or just watch the pigs taste,

The eggs of the birds curious,

Oh, but that makes them furious,

An update on the continuing war,

“We won’t take it anymore,”

Quote the Angry Birds,

With their fast and furious words,

“Our nest has been violated,

The eggs were taken out,

I didn’t see a pig steal them,

But on one’s snout,

I saw part of an egg yolk,

Smeared on his face,

Even though he thought,

He left no trace,

Now we’re angry birds,

Taking flight,

With a little help,

They’ll see our might.”

If you’re opposed to war,

Choose to hear or see no more,

But if you can relate,

There’s already a new update,

They’re on Twitter and Facebook,

And iTunes if you look,

The birds are here and over there,

I think they’ll soon be everywhere.