We Can Never Know

Tomahawk

Grayish, like an airplane
But with stubs, not wings
Flying straight and low and fast

To watch it in flight
It’s beautiful to me

Like an air show
A demonstration
But no cockpit?

Too narrow to seat a pilot
Long and sleek
Arrow straight

It’s going somewhere

It was sent, launched
By someone
By many people

Who told it to go
Gave the destination
And the load of Nothing

It won’t turn
Won’t slow down
Won’t stop

When it gets close
Wheels won’t fold out
And it won’t land

It won’t knock
Ring the bell
Or use the door

It will be horrible

Slamming, smashing, screeching
Exploding
Bricks, metal, glass

Spraying, dis-integrating, burning
Drywall, pipes, wires, and cameras
Skin, intestines, nerves, and  eyes

Structure falling
Debris scattering
Dust clearing

Silence…

Until sirens fill the air
Red flashing lights
Follow the road

Swerving around boulders
Or pieces of building
Around bundles
Or pieces of people

People

Who we could never know were good or bad
Nor what they would have felt
Some hours later

When they would have been
But some miles away
Opening a door

Stepping in
And sitting down
With their family for dinner

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2 Comments

Filed under Poetry

2 responses to “We Can Never Know

  1. vilija

    Strong piece.
    It speaks for itself.

  2. Anonymous

    This piece is taut and spare – and relentless, like the projectile it describes. Powerful imagery.

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