the asteroid strikes
the earthquake hits
the dirty bomb gets delivered
the lone gunman is not alone
is not somewhere you’re not
is not driven by race religion gender
or choice of favorite team
the power goes out
water doesn't flow
sun doesn't rise
and reality in some form comes crashing in
while you're just a bit too far from home
to close that backyard bunker door
The Radio Operator
A desert somewhere. Two men work,
cleaning out a destroyed enemy tank.
It's part of the war's routine.
The object is shrunken by fire,
is the same black as the uniform
now burned and fused to it.
It was trapped inside the hot, steel box
when the anti-tank shell pierced the armor,
a brand new sun shining in the confines.
As the body was pulled from the hulk,
the arms and head broke away.
Only the boots attest to a human corpse.
It's part of a war's routine.
This is what we do to each other
in the name of gods and countries.
There are places of worship
where fluted columns raise vaulted arches,
barred ghetto windows pierce brick,
or trees edge green and white by season;
where voices echo singly in the stillness,
speak only in their hearts,
or match to dancing clapping.
Can it really be
God prefers one
or the other?
Lennart Lundh's work has appeared internationally since 1965. He served with the U.S. Navy's Amphibious Ready Group Bravo, supporting Marine Corps operations in Vietnam during 1968 and 1969. Len was honorably discharged as a conscientious objector under NavPers 1860120 in December of 1970. Photo by Jen Pezzo.