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.

Advertisements

Don’t You Ever Weary

Don’t you ever weary;

War, propaganda, lying

Corrupting your soul,

Disillusioning our minds.

Done with a smile–

You think us likely to believe,

But we can only be fooled for so long.

Loved ones die for your greed,

Laid to waste in foreign lands.

Brought back with thin veiled honors,

Do you think that flag draped coffins comfort?

They do not!

They cannot!

Tell me–how many barrels of oil is their flesh worth,

A few cents at the pump,

A few more billions in your coffers?

They mean nothing to you,

You do not know them,

You have not held them at birth,

You will not grieve for them when they die,

But you surely will forget them as if they never existed.

You should drop to your knees and beg forgiveness,

Confessing your sinful, criminal ways.

Then again why?

It would all be for naught

For even then you would not be saved.

Such is the price paid–

When the seven deadly sins become

…Your lords and masters.

 

~~ Dominic R. DiFrancesco ~~

 

Complicit Are They

Complicit are they

Brandishing their mighty swords

While crying for war

They hold the blade to our necks

Prepared to slaughter skeptics

Monsters, murderers

A mess of their creation

Denied as fiction

How short the memory is

When the Right can blame the Left

 

~~ Dominic R. DiFrancesco ~~