Sunsets glow here in Al-Iraq,
it casts an orange beige;
fiery though its blister stare,
the horizon is still a dusty greige;
visual spectres shun its light,
twilight’s shield released its guige;
haunt these streets my squad and I,
my sense perceives vestige.
History’s constantly revisited,
through the cobwebs of my mind;
pathway trod by all humanity,
birth and death of man entwined;
humankind’s vistas temerariously adrift,
fate is intertwined;
plight creeps into my sensing thought,
awakes subconscious winds.
Night’s prayer sounds, the cry is heard,
drifting from lone minaret;
caution bleeds its honing sense,
we each drop glowing cigarettes;
masks filled of almond eyes peek,
heads turn to our receiving set;
desperation seeps, the mullah shrieks,
Allah Akbar, prayers duet.
Prayer beads, worn hands,
hot streets are lined with pious souls;
demands as such five times each day,
man’s religion on patrol;
unconscious, the kneeling mass,
into the square a shadow strolls;
thoughts delve into my mind,
danger, alert, my breath extols.
By din of voice the streets release,
men humbly prayer call part;
life here slowly turns, bodies duck,
my heart fades then it starts;
death wakens itself quick,
specific no doubt just read Descartes’;
exists last hint of bullets path,
my face is gone my soul departs.
Michael Darrell Walker