Tuesday, August 2, 2011

system is the problem

We cudda had it all.
But we could never get enuff.
We coated ourselves w/ the pelts of torture.
The warmer we made our bodies the colder we became inside.
We are like doctors in the death camps:
Saving the babies only for them to be executed in their own coal mine.
(We have run out of songbirds long ago.)
cannot work for change within the system when the…

[repeat it until you gt it...]

a little old lady

a little old lady (died today) © jimmy.mankind@gmail.com

All more than replenished by her unfailing love of family.
And their love for her.
A little old lady died today.
But not exactly.
She was killed.
She was somebody’s mother.
She was somebody’s grandmother.
But she was also a poet who wrote funny, pretty stories for her children
and her grandchildren
she wrote stories and songs for babies to sleep by
she wrote lullabies
she knitted and she sewed
so many gifts of time and energy
All replenished by her unfailing love of family
And their love for her.
A little old lady died today.
But not exactly.
She was killed.
She was somebody’s mother.
She was somebody’s grandmother.
In her later years she was a writer for grown-ups.
She wrote about life’s foibles with an inborn sense of humor.
She wrote a cookbook: she sold it through various shops in the bazaars
Throughout Baghdad.
She studied Rumi although she was brought up Sunni and
Rumi was from Persia which is now called Iran,
which is Shiite.
She studied all the religions over the years.

Covertly, of course.
She didn’t want her husband, who was Sunni, to get the wrong impression.
She decided that all religions were good and
All were flawed.
On that subject she kept her own council. As a woman would in Islam.
She was writing a novel when she was killed.
She was somebody’s mother.
She was somebody’s grandmother.
She was walking home
Her arms dragged down
By the weight of vegetables and bread and soap
From the marketplace.
She had sold four books that day:
2 of children’s songs. what she called poems.
1 cookbook.
1 storybook for children.
This little old lady died today
well, not exactly.
She was murdered.
The smell of gasoline. Some other similar chemical...
[A child running–a girl from the abstract shape of her charcoal stick statuette–
arms outstretched to greet her grannie.
in a village of
Charcoals on a canvas of sand...
from 10,000 feet.
From 2 miles up one sees landscapes of sandy curves studded w’ squares, rectangles, lines, shadows, disappeared into a large zone stirred by dust devils.
Not god’s werk. D.O.D. for sure, not GOD.
Here. No god.

Would. See.
A grannie’s carbon remnant posed as a black replica bent over in the act of setting down her grocery bags...the little girl running arms outstretched still. now. forever. the dust. beginning to swirl on the breeze...filling in for the rising heat...striking the fragile charcoal figures...spoofing their lives as in modern epiphanies they crumble.
To dust. They. Return.]
As the Gringo * flyboys call it in, they reminisce: (We used to strafe their free range chickens for fun. Creating feasts for the farmers. Every day a holiday! New weird toys make new weird games to play. Like Gog, Magog, DOD, our god, their god, all the gods there ever were.)
The US DOD pays 5,000 for a man,
2,500 for a woman
500 for grannie or a child.
..if any soldier and his translator has the temerity to lift the knocker to the door of a charcoal house in a half-mile wide circle of death.
These numbers are not publicized.
Control information; you control this poison dust.
To dust we shall return: some sooner than others, some over and over again, creating more of it.
Here, fate is our call. We apply it randomly for fairness sake, and balance.
Of course. In case they’re out when we call, we make the land radioactive...dust blows.
The soldiers say. But that’s another story.
A little old lady died today.
White heat came over her like a hot flash.
She’d felt plenty of those welling up from within in her life. What with having six children...in
Her lovely, innocent life.
This flash came from without.
It took off her robes and her skin as quickly as it blinded, muted, and deafened her.

It gratefully benumbed her
As it sucked the oxygen from around her from above around and below, yes, down below her feet even six inches into the soil and removing O2 and H and all the roots ryizomes fungi dueling dancing so long and peacefully with their enemy bacteria worms, detritus, the stalks barks trunks leaves and out of her lungs and out of the water molecules of her body as if she was turning into a dried sprig of rosemary or sage in her own oven
in her own kitchen
in her own home
in her own village.
She became a stick figure: black and crisp and much smaller than she was.
They’d conjure later that this was not her, must be the body of a child.
When they found her. It could not be her.
But it was her. Known...
Because of the melted gold that formed a droplet in the middle of her char-coaled hand.
No child would carry gold.
For this mistake the Americans paid her children and her grandchildren (those left alive for their fate of living in a village distant from this week’s carnage) $2,500.00
[Something for her husband who died three days later of no discernable military-medical cause.]
The American who brought the money seemed sincerely sad and chastened.
[Her children and her grandchildren said he never told them America was sorry.]
He said it was an accident. That she was in the wrong place at the wrong time.
[A place she’d been in almost every day at any time she pleased for over sixty years. A place Americans had been for seven years. Time enough to have earned degrees, married, started families, if only the schools hadn’t been targeted. Seven years of the worst nightmare imaginable, the worst seven years of any being who ever lived in Mesopotamia and worse than that for any living soul that wound up burned maimed bereft alone amid the degradation, squalor, pain of war, the nada caked upon idiocy and hubris and the useless, dangerous indifference.]
The American officer seemed to say, “Here, take this as a token of our sorrow, our pity, our empire, our pride, our bad aim. It’s our place to pay.”
Which meant to them–her children and her grandchildren–something smarmy in their culture,

“It’s the price we pay.”
which in American ears, would sound like accidentally tripping someone in a soccer game.
Or spilling coffee on the homework. Or sewing too close to the fireplace or the dog hit by a grenade, shrieking home, your youngest run over by a truck, shrieking in the street, your fruit trees knocked down by tanks in search of places to park.
So sad to free your land.
She might have been number the millionth, as that total’s never in the news.
[Since they refuse to tell us, no one really knows.]

A little old lady died today.
Well, not exactly. She was murdered. She was somebody’s mother. She was somebody’s grandmother. She was a wife and she was also a poet. She wrote funny, poignant stories and pretty poems for her children and her grandchildren.
She wrote lullabies. She hugged babies to sleep as she sang to them.
She knitted and she sewed:
So many gifts of time and energy.

A little old lady died today
Well, not exactly.
She was murdered coming home from market.
Along with a grand-daughter, a husband, nearly seventy, some neighborhood kids whose names she would forget in that moment, and a daughter...she wondered about her daughter...
And if she was murdered too. In that same flash, or some other, and if she would see any of them in Heaven.
She didn’t have time to wonder if Heaven really existed...her eyes locked on her purely innocent angel’s eyes as she running arms out-stretched laughing, to greet her grannie...
last thing she saw was the light shining in the eyes of the bright adoring face of her
baby grand-daugh…then she died instantly. So she died happy.
...but knowing, in that split second, Hell existed.
Right here. Where she had been.