Everyday soldier

War is real estate

land taken by force
defended as one's own

only to be lost 
eventually retaken
sometimes every day 
who claims their share
there's no escaping

the made-up stories 

we tell ourselves
you them we share in fantasy
each bed sleeping
while some are lying
there are no dreams

they say history is written 
by those who win
for a time that trick is ticked
gives shelter from the storm
but at sea you see 
who's hand tills Gericault's raft 

so it seems stories go 
each one a work of art
their inspiration
honed all day
a thing carved too well
makes everybody high

and proud enough to scrape 

vain courage
belief in blind devotion
to battlefield memorials 
so they too 
go to war

defending some old ground
that's always shaken
while music plays the grand entres
stages painted the actors decorated
words contrive some old reason
everyday logic follows

we must do the same

image: Invasion / synthetic polymer on paper / A3 x 2  JSkewes 2003


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