Returning from the war I locked away my gun
put away my uniform and that part of me
I was already damaged and not quite whole
thrown back into the world with bleak uncertainty
doubt funnels through my brain like a sieve
while I sit on a slab of ebbing confusing emotions
a large oscillating wave of self-doubt pressing against me
it never leaves me even when I pretend to sleep
I feel it’s weight upon me even now as I try to speak
a cell-block encasing my heart even though I try to break free
I ask my maker every day, what will become of me?
© Rebecca Sanchez 2018
The prompt was weapon and I could have added it to the poem but this (fantasy) soldier is a weapon himself, taught to both use and become a weapon. Once home, our soldiers find it hard to turn off these learned behaviors and stop the bad memories from returning home with them.
Deactivate-remove from active duty in the military.
I used the animated GIF to write my poem and found it during a Google image search.
Written with my friends at Poets United.
My heart breaks when I watch what’s happening in the world today
we have truly lost our minds in America letting ourselves be treated like cattle
being herded in whatever direction the political wind blows
we’ve given up, even if it leads us to the slaughterhouse
the invisible lines that separate us are turning into Trump-like walls
our history has taught us nothing as racial tensions separate us further respect for the people that protect us is gone, replaced by mistrust fueled by violence and ignorance
men are still in power pushing their sexual agendas on their victims
keeping women under their thumb as they get less pay for the same jobs
the house and senate don’t care about the people’s will, it’s all about their own agendas
our government is corrupt, greedy and we let them get away with it
cell phones have invaded the earth and people are transfixed by them
social interaction online has taken the place of real friendship
growing homeless camps are ignored and tolerated rather than helped
we think we’re paying taxes for a good cause then the money is spent elsewhere and we’re taxed for it again
although half of the people living now are 65, they can’t work because the jobs are given to younger people
they face higher costs for living every year while the retirement age goes up and benefits get cut
we pay a fortune for insurance many going without when other countries have health care for all
even with insurance many go without glasses, dental care and more
simple kindness and decency seem lost while our jails and prisons open their doors letting felons out for good behavior
we are losing touch with each other and we don’t know who to trust letting fear paralyze us
it’s difficult to know how to proceed when the psyche of countless people in our country are bruised and we’re bleeding out
I did as I’ve been told the system has let me down and I feel taken advantage of.
Some believe the soul is immortal, even so, our bodies are limited
we’re only here once and should be enjoying what this wonderful planet has to offer
instead, this is what we sow, this is how we spend this precious time
we vote and hope for a better life only to be fed fake news and tricked into submission
country against country, race against race, religion against religion-it never ends
right now, children are starving, being raped and abused, put into slavery, taught to shoot guns and carry bombs
my heart breaks when I watch what’s happening to the people of this world,
when do we say, how do we say,
© Rebecca Sanchez 2018
I’m a fan of brevity in poetry but this poem practically wrote itself and could have been longer. I don’t pretend to have the answers but I do know these things are going to take more than time to get better. History will show that’s usually through violence and war. We need to be strong and make ourselves heard through numbers.
Written with my friends at Poets United for the prompt psyche/soul. I animated the artwork.