Young Men And Women Do Volunteer (Nested Landays)

Young men and women do volunteer

To fight for their country to the death, showing no fear

 

Their orders arrive just as they would

Off they go overseas in the hopes of doing good

 

Then there’s reality, oh the shock

Our core cultural values, by their ways they do rock

 

Women are property, used for sex

Sold to the highest bidder, the western mind perplexed

 

Wanting to react, but told they can’t

They turn a blind eye, though to each other they do rant

 

Lying in their cots, many tears shed

This war was not what they thought, they have all been misled

 

Romantic ideas, wars of the past

Live only in the movies there’s no way they could last

 

War is not romantic, kill and maim

Each victim has a mother and each face has a name

 

Someones left mourning, crying revenge

Seeking to draw blood, to honor loved ones they avenge

 

How do pray tell, will this cycle end

When it’s all about oil, our interests they pretend

 

After a decade, I doubt it will

The military industries haven’t had their fill

 

When this war ends another will come

Reasoned by our government, just watch and see their fun

 

Be sure and take my word, more will die

No matter how we complain, no matter how we try

 

As always, our young will volunteer

Believing propaganda from mongers they will hear

 

Gung-ho with ideals, noble ‘tis true

Witnessed in commercials they’re the brave, the proud, the few

 

Til God forbid the time ever comes

You gaze into their eyes, pull the trigger of the gun

 

From that moment on your life will change

You become a killer, a feeling that must be strange

 

Hoping that the reasons are pure, true

To live with such an action, the rest of your life through

 

Mourn for those who died and those alive

They will never be the same no matter how they strive

 

Mourn this generation raised with war

Think about the reasons, they are poisoned to the core

 

What kind of legacy will we leave

One that’s draped in death, they are constantly left to grieve

 

Can this end before it is too late

I pray that it can or destruction will be our fate


~~ Dominic R. DiFrancesco ~~

 

NOTE: Origination Afghanistan – a landay has only a few formal properties. Each has twenty-two syllables: nine in the first line, thirteen in the second. The poem ends with the sound “ma” or “na.” Sometimes they rhyme, but more often not. In Pashto, they lilt internally from word to word in a kind of two-line lullaby that belies the sharpness of their content, which is distinctive not only for its beauty, bawdiness, and wit, but also for the piercing ability to articulate a common truth about war, separation, homeland, grief, or love. Within these five main tropes, the couplets express a collective fury, a lament, an earthy joke, a love of home, a longing for the end of separation, a call to arms, all of which frustrate any facile image of a Pashtun woman as nothing but a mute ghost beneath a blue burqa.  The full description and some history of the form can be found at poetryfoundation.org.  I took some liberties with this form as it does not translate perfectly into English.  I did maintain the 9 and 13 syllables per line format, but eliminated the “ma” or “na” ending sound requirement opting instead to rhyme which can occur with this form.

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Looking Back (Shakespearean Sonnet)

Looking  back upon the boy of youth,

The world seemed such a hopeful place;

So full of promise and full of truth,

Enough for all the human race.

Government a partner and a friend,

One we did not need to fear.

Alway there with a helping hand,

Their mission statement was oh so clear.

Protect and nurture and not infringe;

The mandate since the fathers founded.

Avoid at all cost a spending binge;

Ideals of old were firmly grounded.

Now this world once so full of hope

Is sliding down corruptions slippery slope.

~

~~ Dominic R. DiFrancesco ~~

~

Authors Note: This is my first attempt at a sonnet, I know it isn’t quite as Shakespearean as Shakespeare would have liked it, but it seemed to work for the topic.

Its Hard to Believe

Its hard to believe that it is but a short dozen years

A dozen years since this world changed

Changed a nation and its ideals

The ideals founded on a promise gave way to extremism

An extremism not so unlike that of the terrorist

The terrorist has taken away our freedoms

Our freedom to assemble, our right to privacy

Privacy is a thing of the past taken away by our government

Our government says they must take it to protect us

Protect us from whom, who will protect us from them is the question

Questioning however, is taken as unpatriotic

Unpatriotic! This is our right and our duty as citizens

Citizens who have become nothing but pawns

Pawns to governmental corruption and big business

Business’ who are now treated as citizens by the Supreme Court

The Supreme Court who was supposed to keep the executive and legislative in check have let us down

Down are path I fear is collapsing

Collapsing with each step we take down the road

A road, one way, on which their is no return

Oh…to return our moral compass to true

Truly that would be our greatest strength

Strength of character, morals, of humanity that we so long ago lost

Lost to our greed, selfishness and intolerance

Intolerance for ourselves, other nations, other ideals

Ideals that were long deceased before September 11, 2001

September 11, 2001 was just another nail

A nail in a coffin already occupied

Occupied but not inescapable if we would try

Try to resurrect the intentions of our founding fathers

Fathers far wiser than the lot of thieves currently in office

Offices held by both parties

Parties that no longer represent the people

A people that deserve better

Better than to live without freedom, in oppression and under tyranny

.

~~ Dominic R. DiFrancesco ~~