War Poet.ca - A CFAP Project by Suzanne Steele

Suffield Tree (2nd draft)

they say I sing the dead,
my worthless words so damned
needy; my fingers grasp, tap
tap tap tap
a lidded laptop
roots into hard, dust-bowl earth;
I am alone,
I am scorched,
like the roots of that tree
razor-wired, shadeless
I am that tree
in weird and green, twisted
desert of Suffield,
he tried to cut me down;
I am that tree
that grows beside the long gravel
road, the road into the valley
the valley that casts no shadow,
no death;
where boys I once knew laughed,
laughed in live-fire
gusts of hail and shitshow
the blackened earth their rehearsal,
their rehearsal for dumbed eternal;
boys gone that can never return to boys,
boys I last saw with a maple leaf flag cinched and strapped,
to the cold box that brought them home—
their country’s last embrace, their mother’s last
embrace, the kiss, last kiss before their grave,
so warm, so damned cold;
and I am so damned alone
like that tree at Suffield
razor-wired. rootless.
I can no longer
sing. my way home.


1 Comment (Closed)

Rocky Ehlers

We just had a young man returned to us from Afghanistan with one arm remaining. Your writing addresses this tradgedy.
“When will they ever learn.” somebody of my generation said so long ago. And here we go again.
R.

Jan 01 2011 · 23:02

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The page you're reading contains a single diary entry entitled Suffield Tree (2nd draft). It was posted here on December 29, 2010.

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