Sunday, June 25, 2006

I once killed a poet

We crouch in the dark foxholes
afraid to breathe out loud.
The air raid siren is whining down
like it was burrowing into
the safety its own hole.
In the eerie silence, a child
cried somewhere and the mother yelled
“Shut up, or we’ll get bombed out.”
More sshh shhhing and then all of us
are scanning the moonless
cloudless starlit sky with trepidation.
How I wished I were a pilot shooting
down those bastards who made us tremble like
scared animals in the trenches past midnight.
“My grandmother says stars are the
eyes of our dear protectors,” she whispers.
If I could, I would have gouged
them out, to make myself less visible.
“But I think they are more like the
beating hearts of our dear fairies,” she says
clasping her hands together in a fervent prayer.
How I wished I were in the sky, fighting
the enemy instead of hearing such pansy stuffs here.
Someone coughs loudly and apologizes.
How long will it be before the all-clear
siren comes, I wonder, how long
will it be before I finish school and
get into the Air Force , how long…
“I think the moon is like…”
I pinch her budding breasts and she
winces in pain and shuts up. I can see
the glistening swell of tears in her
eyes as I return to the sky
to shoot the bastards down.

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Uncle Joe

“I think I have TB,” moans
Uncle Joe, “ I don’t think
the doctors here have
diagnosed me properly.”
I nod sympathetically.
He looks so shriveled,
and skinny that
one of these days,
I feel he’d just
turn into a wall paper.
I feel sorry for him,
because he was a doctor himself
and yet suspects his own clan.
Perhaps he has his reasons.
“I think the nurses
are trying to poison me,”
Now he’s suspecting them too.
“Uncle, they are doing
their best.” I say, “I mean, they’re trying
to heal you.” He misses my gaffe.
Doctors perhaps, make
the worst patients.
“My teeth are becoming
powdery,” he whispers.
If I’m an 86 yr old like him,
I’d be very glad if I
just had my teeth. Powdery or not.
“I am in this trouble all because
of your aunt,” he claims, “She
had no business to leave me like this.”
Bless her poor soul. Even dead,
she is blamed by him for all his ailings.
So like the unfortunate women of her generation.
“Take me to some other hospital,”
he pleads, and I nod, though
I won’t. Sooner or
later, he’d realize he
can’t trust me too.