War, Trojan Horse
Where is war?
Which part of me?
Which misbegotten sanctimony
Where is its law?
In my words of exile...
Is it this brain—culprit, my abacus
Its complex mathematics?
Mad at the balance!
Spitting out the bones
Which fold is where it hides?
Which artery opens up its locks
To let war lower down—
To steer war with its black hull and its awful prow
Through my lightless body?
Where does it lurk
Where does it skulk
Who said it could divide me?
Where is that border that it conquered?
Where I wage war
Harvest its corpses
Calculate their cost to myself?
The world watches, their dull eyes roll
We are at war—
In the retina that reverses us
The thumb and index—
My grip on chains?
Where you shake my hand—
feel for a pistol?
Which cells, engorged with hate
Furious, killing, the
Bad cascade of thoughts.
Who scrapes up the blood—its
toll is in me
Who counts the innocence
Oh crooked finger!
I am the theatre
It all takes place in me
I lower lights
The iron helmets clank on stage
Great bulks of death open their capes
The onslaught bombs the coast
And I am standing there beneath the fuselage—
Under the steel mass of their warships and
Turbines cutting up our serene depth, they
Terrorize the rocks inside me
They crush down of their own accord
And casualties of rage,
we all jump to our doom.
I am war
My bulwark fails me
I am in the cockpit
Watching cities blow
The world burns
And I turn this thing around
To kill—more war!
I am war
I can't find its blunt and ugly head in me
Its monstrous snout
Its black and blood gorged horn
I examine every bone and organ
For its foot print,
I stalk myself
surveil myself, I look through the crosshairs
at my back
I am the enemy
Where is my war?
Who is this mass of wires and accusation?
Who broke here under pressure
Defected, as they fell on my kinsmen?
I heard them screaming
And I ran away,—Deserter!! Coward, Turncoat, Red!
I am the blood and guts
I am despair
The carnage of this blood cult.
I am war.
When I die
On my tomb write:
"She Went off to War"
Then tell them how you found me—
Wandering, a madwoman
On a battle field, concussed
There were others there in violence
Still thrashing in their graves
Their teeth were bared and
They were still cursing us.
We were at war,
We were at war.
Say, "she was looking in her own mouth
Spinning in tight circles
Drilling her bones down
And could not find the source of death
Coming in walls of bullets, bombs,
Coming in fire."
I said. "I Am Satan"
And you said, "War is hell"
I said. "I am Hell"
I roared out: "I am WAR!"
Tell them that I said that!
Warn them that I said that
"I am WAR."
They buried all the warriors in a horse
And dumped him on the grave of solemn elders.
Over the babies dead of smallpox
And those who burned in fiery waters
From the inside out.
They snuffed the voices that were
Moaning in the earth
And weighed down heavily on the mothers—
Crushed them and their bowls and scraping shells
With rods and battling charges.
With the fury of the cosmos, leashed and rearing
Throwing its head and dashing at the blue sky
Struck its sharp red hooves and
Kicked down the world.
They dumped the arrows in the graves
And pointed them at skeletons and outward
Shooting merciless at all the food
And all the blood of the unborn
And the living and the already dead.
In the bellies of the animal
There were death's hoods in formation
And stirred up in the poison
Were the crimes
The judge of all that's holy
Slammed his fist into the idol
And the dead stood up.
The bodies rolled up in their bison furs, the
Deer and all the feeding creatures
Lifted up their skulls and horns
All the pheasants and the geese
And blackbirds from the marshes
And the meadowlarks and mountain birds
Grew silent. All were gathered in those graves.
All were enemies of this suffering
Poured out from the
Horrid smoking cauldrons.
In the dead of night, under the thunder clouds
In the ice of death, they took their forms again,
The ponies with the scars and the feathered things and all those
With their wools and hairs, and beaks and crests
And with talons and long teeth and
Bellowing and shrieks—they came
And even the old cedars with blazed forks
Carved in their honor
Began their rumbling.
The men with soft feet stood up, followed by the women
And the babies lept down in the bones, not knowing any other world
The mountains shifted in their locks and stood at their attention.
The dead machine was over them and bleeding in their shadows
Pools and dirt, this bile and slurry
The machine was dying over all of them
There was a beast up on the altar of their holiness.
In the night of pitch dark holes and depths, where men grope like the worms
To make sense of their interment
Where the scowls of death and threats and brandishing of scythes
And rattling chains of reaction
Choke the last breath out of murdered bodies,
Where injustice drifts in yellowed smokes over the evidence
That is where the hate stood up
And the war in them rose up and took position.
In the dawn of the day,
When the ground shook from below and
Around the false horse, which had eaten all the meadows
And had sucked up all the streams,
Where the bloated horse had foundered
On its own rich food
That is when and where the metal and combustion stalled
And the blows rained down
The horse fell, his hoof horn cracked and
Broke his speed
The deus ex machina shuddered and tipped
And all the lies hemorrhaged into the lake
The spirits struck the final blow
And its head came crashing down.
They buried him, that Trojan brute
In a pit not fit for hunting
Down in the suffocating acrimony
And the belching gasses of the good earth
In the justice of the stones where, imprisoned,
He would wait infinity, half alive.
All spent. In the doom of leeching death back
Into death. With no transmigration.
With no soul to travel.
Just a noxious substance
Swallowed through the centuries
By forgiving soil
Even as it kills her.
The awful cold tower looms, her pointed head
Columnar in the X ray moonlight
And the river dreads the cancer on its bank.
The festering monstrosity rots in on itself
Until it can be hauled away
Into another bomb-like home
Into another burnt out desert
Where they hide their weapons
Where they hide the corpses
Both dead and alive
And run like cowards to their parlors
Run like jackals from the feeding
It was a massive effort
Of the buried clan
They threw off death so they could die in peace
Now that the deed is over
And they can resume their golden sleeping
Without this predator menacing their mound.
With this horror dancing on the roof
(The Trojan Facility in Oregon was a nuclear power plant built over an Indian sacred burial ground. This plant was closed after years of litigation.)