She awoke, and not wanting to disturb Terrance let her sleepy feet quietly fumble for the slippers she’d left like two sleeping puppies by the bedside.
[Hayah awoke to an explosion and grabbed her spear
lunging out of the tent like a hot breath.
A whole file of Terruvians already slaughtered
defending in a stubborn circle their virgin-whore Queen.]
The coffee percolated in a language of its own. Thoughts of the day ahead bubbled up like pinpoint lights stirring her foggy mind.
[The Hemalytes, emboldened in their lust,
some now maimed and bleeding, but firm,
drove toward the Queen like frenzied wasps.]
On the subway it all seemed so normal how a man gently pulled down his mask to administer to himself a bit of chewing gum.
[Hayah’s spear found Tengara’s inner thigh.
His scream cracked the earth and released
5 thousand Sheyan warriors, each clutching
in her hand a different word for death]
I awoke, tired of social distancing
my feet propped up on a sterile pillow
by my wife’s snoring head.
The sun rose in a bang and for a minute I panicked
thinking of how heroes die, then comforted myself
remembering that I wasn’t one.
This great country, I wailed,
is raring for a captain bold
to navigate a river that runs both ways.
(That’s where women get it wrong
believing that hope is their unique commodity)
They sprayed rubber bullets, then
he waved a rubber bible
and 5 thousand hands offered up
masks to hide his bone-bleached smile.
Something, I thought, we’ll all tell our grandkids.