Winter Moon (A Soldier’s Thoughts)
I sleep under you tonight.
Such weak, white you shed.
I am incomplete, unfed.
I walk in half-bled light,
Mistrust my calloused sight.
Bitter, burned and insufficient,
I search out signs to find some depth.
Inert spirit, please proclaim time,
My name, what leavens shame (my daily bread).
How often do you find me here,
Underneath your sharpened shears
Hoping tourniquets will bleed out fear.
Honesty is a substance without a face.
My life, a race without reward.
Judged by some distant, insignificant
Board of faceless superiors, infringing
Upon my infinite interiors, leaving
Me gutted like a holiday gourd.
I sin silently, violently,
In purple disgust.
I must repent but I have already
Lent you all my disguises,
Where have you hidden June,
My warmth, my finite beliefs?
I cough out grief and dream of trains that
Ride rails in the dust, treading on
Steel and earthen crust.
Just let me drive on
Without doubt or drought.
Am I allowed to sit here tonight without
Speech? Teach me how bravery fights,
How winter bites and fire ignites a spirit
Dead in rotting leaves.
This will not cease nor bend.
Death condescends and outlines its
Territory in bright chalk.
I have not bloomed.
I have not moved since you sat with me
My first sleepless night.
I, still, sit unprepared, waiting for the
Secrets of dawn but addictive yawns
Lay me down before light rises,
Before the skyline opens arms and
I know the emptiness in humanness
But cannot escape, raped by false
Proclamations, integrations and fallen
Nations. I play victim and murderer.
I wear honesty and lie in its philosophy.
I buy justice and sell it.
I shout hope from mountains and
Slide in doubt to low valleys, raise
Rallies of truth and disguise my sentences.
I am a menace to my own person who
Shuns mirrors, absolutes, no longer resolute.
I had dreams and roots that grew deep
In fertile ground but the sound of gold
Is now silence and I am blinded, grinded
Past simplicity and the ability to serve.
Your eyes watch sleeping spirits
And ingrown disgust of lust.
You guard planets of guiltless regard.
I store up pain on checkerboards
Of ingrained solitude and planned
Moods to please perfectionism.
I will never satisfy the hungry lion.
Marrow and bone, blood and stone
Cannot contend with eternity,
(The burned hole in me) that may
Never be fully filled.
I do not want to lose dignity.
I clench pride in fists—tight
That hold fault, the insult
Of salvation, planned creation
I want to believe, abide by what
Has been decreed but only bear
I justify days by hours
Night by eyes
Myself by dust.
My silenced habitat,
Hear my cry,
Turn not from empty palms.
Unleash your stars,
Sharded boulevards in a
Release to me why I still breathe—barely,
While cities tumble and men cry shame.
Plagiarize just half your light to remind
Me that I am alive.
Be a friend that does not soak secrets
Just to pour out revenge.
Care to stare longer than a lover would.
Be stronger than wood,
Steel guns, bronzed freedom.
Wave longer than flag's memorials and
Do not let day come
Until I understand