Infamy


For our fallen military – Veterans Day

Fair Sunday morning

port of pearls

a child draped within mother’s arms—

battleship quays strung and fastened

swarms of flies disturb        awaken

a sleeping force gathers itself

to swat them away

fighter planes perched tip to tip

flightless, fall easy prey

Arizona, hit by piercing flare

ripped, gutted by stowed magazine

settles to her watery bed

as hundreds float stillborn within

Desperate dancers

search for space between bullets

a twisting, arching ballet

to tympani fortissimo, staccato snare

hot bite of shrapnel in treble screams

between oil and flames

a human log jam crowds the sea

with glass eyes and waxy fingers

wayward toe

torn lip that last kissed mother goodbye

others lie on stretchers

awaiting trial by triage

Uncle Roy’s dreams                Billy’s future             generations dissolved

suspended by marriage of powder and steel

in frothy, bleeding brine

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