Friday, February 1, 2008

Plane to Iraq (a poem)

Plane to Iraq
(Poetic Prose)

Walking the length of the plane, exercising,
upstairs, in the lounge, drinking beer and vodka—soldiers,
The New York Times, The Guardian, newspapers
laying about, everyone talking, we’re flying over the
Midwest, soldiers on their way to Iraqi, Negros and Whites,
Mexicans, and Yellow, and Reds and even a few Arabs…
so many young soldiers on this flight, they’re thin like trees:
in the morning, they’ll be rising someplace in the
Middle East, forgotten this plane flight, and all their stories.

“It’s my country, the good old USA,
better I fight over there than here, they’ll rape my
mother and sister,” such a way to think, but they say it.

A few soldiers in the back of the plane, singing away,
one saying, “I better fight, no choice now
I reenlisted the other day… we don’t want to
lose the war, now do we, then what? We’ve already paid
a dear price.”

Young minds for crazy times—what can I say.

“Those Arabs, we can’t stop them, not now,
there are too many of them, we’re fighting for oil,
on someone else’s soil,” an old man bellows
to his wife by his side—
“Isn’t that so honey, what it’s all about?”

There must be a hundred soldiers on board,
“In boot camp you learn to eat fast,” a soldier says,
I remember Vietnam, when the bombs
came, you learn to eat fast there also,
threw the food on the tray, everywhichway,
mostly in the air when you hear the sound
of the rockets nearing… hide, or dig a hole,
and bury your head, before it is severed…
I guess he’ll have to learn.

—I think they’ve been listening to programs
of propaganda, they believe what they are told
mostly, told mostly by the so called, friendly lies,
the truth is—so I think, walking the length of this plane
—is, ‘…eat well my soldier friends, for soon you will
be living like animals, packaged like dog food, sardines
and there will be no magic formula to get you clean…
or out of Hell.

#2208 2-2-2008 (Originally called ‘Steel Eagle’)

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