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60 YEARS ON – WWII haiku sequence

25 Feb


Published in World Haiku Review, Spring-Summer 2005.

60 YEARS ON

sixty years—
the half-life
of hatreds?

the flames in
mother’s stove—that was
friendly fire

harder to tell
friend from foe
through hot tears

war poems
wrinkle noses—
written in blood

millions of coffins
send up green shoots—
waiting to see the fruit

silent night
on Bataan broken
the marching ghosts

unnatural,
being survived by your
shadow

sun to my back
I bow to shadows—
honoring the dead

ambitions
metastasized—
fatal to millions

battlefield dead—
these red blooms gone
black by dusk

this field of slaughter—
storm clouds! have you
tears enough for this?

in triumph, in defeat—
broken parents, widowed wives,
orphans, curse war

for the worms here,
sharks in the sea below—
corpses all taste alike

as these enemies
slay each other, at home,
their mothers pray

above this blasted marsh
a flock circles once
and moves on south

grenade in flight—
my enemy’s face
suddenly reminds me of

after the shell blast—
a wet warmth …
a spreading chill

a boy who went to war
a year ago
a lifetime ago

sixty years later
casualty estimates
near completion

war talk—
those who do not know
imagine glory

_______________________

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Posted by on February 25, 2015 in Haiku & Senryu

 

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