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by Fyn
Rated: 18+ · Poetry · War · #2271619
The pixels that form the whole
Mental scrapbook
of recent images. Not
the big pictures,
the focus of the shots,
but the little details.

These are what
stick in my mind.

Singular blue and yellow
sneaker, almost out of frame
with bloodied yellow
shoelaces
still tied.

Well-loved doll
with worn and tattered
blue dress and once sunny hair,
lying beneath
a crumpled wall.

These are what
stick in my mind.

Wrinkled and dirty
hair ribbon tied
around a messy braid
of the little girl
walking down a street alone.

In repose, a mother
cuddling two children
in a ditch half full of
water, might be
only sleeping.

These are what
stick in my mind.

Arthritic fingers hold
the gun she is learning to fire.
The great-grandmother
will defend her own.
As long as she can.

Trying to be the man,
ten-year-old learning to kill.
He wants to defend
his great-grandmother--
only mom he's ever known.

These are what
stick in my mind.

Dead four-year-old
shot in the stomach
by advancing soldiers
with orders to kill
everyone.

Later report: a visiting cousin
caught on the wrong side
of the border.
The soldiers killed
one of their own.

These are what
stick in my mind.

Images from long ago
form a mental scrapbook.
They could be interchanged.
Same images, different war.
Again and again and again.

Happens on both sides
of that invisible line
for these bits and pieces
of collateral damage
are nothing and everything.

And this, this
is what tears at my mind.














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