***** hands, gun-powder face Pressed against holy robes, Begging final forgiveness.
The father holds his son, The grown boy Clothed in military brown.
Steady, mourning lips whisper a prayer Into the ******, sweat-soaked hair.
His life leaking away in the darkness of the stain spreading across his chest, The soldier sobs. Because his eyes have been dry As his brothers have fallen around And before him As cities have erupted in boiling flames As he has been torn from the inside out by the sounds of human suffering As children have died in his arms As mothers have cursed his name As the world has grown black and charred beneath his feet.
He weeps, Shaking in the arms of God's servant, The sins of his work The guilt of his rifle Burning in his chest Hotter than the biting bullet.
The words of the priest Are drowned By the malicious hum of aircraft overhead.
An angel of death Finds them kneeling on the cobblestones, The holy man and the soldier, Folds them into its inescapable and Unbiased jaws And turns them the color of Fire and gunpowder.