A game of mind and death

War is a game of mind and death,
one that wears down the mortal man,
who has to fight, to maim and kill
and risk his life and limb until
his work of animus is done.

He chokes on war’s infernal breath
and struggles to inhale his fill
and crawl across the green and the tan:
a little pawn in a game of chess,
a speck of dust in the shape of a man.

His hate begets another’s hate:
the thirst to crush, annihilate
one’s enemy, a bestial thing,
a savage, base, unfeeling fiend
who brutally dispatched one’s mate.

Looking aghast at them, the Sun
trades verdant plenitude for dearth
when they, bedecked with laurel wreaths,
the earth beneath them tear and crease —
but gun keeps arguing with gun.

Time slows its pace and starts to freeze
as flames advance, rise up and hiss:
“War is a game of mind and death!”

Photo of a WWII British pillbox. Credit to M.K. Edited with permission

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