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I See You

Zoje Stage
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The caskets, flag-draped,

sit in the open mouth

of our wonder,

waiting for the right burst

of wind to set them free.

 

One by one, they leave their brothers,

sisters, taking wing

with white stars and blood stripes,

sure of their path across

the sky.

 

We are not to see this:

we are not to know how they slept

in the belly;

we are not permitted fragments

of bodies, unholy wrecks

of lost lives, lost love.

 

But you were whole once.

You were wanted.

You bore the brunt of our promises.

 

It is my duty

to watch the death parade, to watch

you leave your brothers, sisters -

one by one -

taking that first flight, home-flagged,

toward the black fringes

of the sun.

In addition to being a writer, Zoje Stage is also a filmmaker. She is currently developing her next feature-length project - a magic realism piece set against the backdrop of the Iraqi war.
Poem coutesy of Poets Against the War
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