So my girlfriend was featured reader at a poetry reading today, and I naturally went, partly of obligation, partly because I'd like to see what poetry is like outside of my incestuous circle of English major friends. As one might have imagined, antiwar poetry was a major theme, and in reaction I first considered writing some sort of pro-war poem, but nothing flowed right, and my heart wasn't in it. So, I just decided to write plain old war poetry.


there is a column of smoke on the desert horizon
spirit of a million cigarettes, fractal
the forge always envying the pyre

there is a column of metal in the middle of the desert
and plastic, and ceramic, and the most unnatural chemicals the world has known
and it never sleeps, for fever dreams of hoof, and gear, and sinew

there is a column of words at the bottom of the desert
May syntax, December lexicon
hybrid vigor

there is no column of salt, however, in the heart of the desert
no pause, no looking backwards - we are humans,
there never was any such direction.