jdubqca

poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the tag “war”

no time for baseball


it’s the bottom of the ninth
and nobody’s keeping score
and though the lights are on
the stadium is nearly empty

in the comfort of my own home
I can’t reach the game on am radio
instead switch to fm and listen to
jimi hendrix covering bob dylan

early morning news feed arrives
bold headlines scream no-hitter
followed by abbreviated stories
regurgitating tales of mass destruction

weatherman breaks in unannounced
low lying fog chemically unbalanced
possibly canceling the school day
if not the entire baseball season




april two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

tip-toeing


opposition forces positioned themselves
in the most peculiar way
so much so nobody seemed to notice
exactly who they were
or what they were doing

last fall foot soldiers were ordered to plant
thousands of tulip bulbs in the minefields
but not all that went in came back alive
and the ones who did rested uncomfortably
for the rest of their lives

by the time spring solstice arrived
the enemy had mysteriously withdrawn
and all the local children awakened with smiles
welcoming the newly risen sun
proceeding to run cautiously
through her once glorious meadows




april two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

counting down the days


after the invasion we stopped lighting candles
instead looked to the stars for answers

the children were best at hide-and-go seek
despite the risk of never being seen again

days of routine left us long after the last train
and now what remains is this suffocating reality
where dreams and nightmares are but one in the same

there are no more rivers to cross or towns to destroy
no more ghosts to disperse or spirits to dispel
no more lessons to be learned
no more ransoms to be paid
no more saviors to be born
no more lives to be saved




march two thousand eighteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

taken to a nearby hospital


the city was on fire
and I was like a lost lamb
roaming past identical houses
hoping the next turn opens up
to a countryside I once knew by heart

they say the nightlife is the best here
where the most beautiful people gathered
to forget the past

but then it was gone in a flash
like a trick of the mind
there you see it
there you don’t
limbs gyrating like an egyptian
eyes mesmerized
believing just about anything

there was a man with a staff
crying out in the city center
where the river divided the land
and though I was perfectly lost
I heard him clearly above the
sirens and screams and
deadly detonations



january two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

how I am drawn to you


the town is vacant
abandoned by war
can you feel me
trembling with fear

the moon is afire
and the field is aglow
can you see me
chasing the wind

the bridge is out
and the river is frozen
can you hear me
calling your name

the border is near
attracting me closer
your arms reach out
unbelievably we embrace



december two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

peeking around the next corner


it seems like everyone is hell bent on
picking a fight
but by everyone I don’t mean you or me

sometimes I want you to make me think
and other times I don’t

I’m not sure which is worse
pretending the white elephant
isn’t actually pink
or acknowledging all is fair
in lust and taxation

I didn’t come here looking
for a fight
and neither did you
so I keep on convincing myself
that’s what keeps us separated
from whatever it is
that’s hurting



november two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

it’s a long way to where I’m going


there is nothing ever new
it has always been there before
whether it be spaceships or dinosaurs

to be or not to be
give me liberty or give me death
what are they but bold proclamations
made by multitudes (of men)
long before recorded history

there is this cumulation of sorts
that continually runs on autopilot
where storms and wars become
even more powerful
nature against man
man against nature (and man)
relentlessly pounding
worldwide peace movements
that somehow flourish surrealistically
century after century

it’s a long way to where I’m going
but chances are once I get there
nobody will ever know



october two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

will you die for him


children playing out back
unrestricted by all the fences
digging foxholes and
sowing the lord’s seeds

dinnertime bells only delay
the inevitable
and just as their bellies
will never be full
most will find it nearly impossible
to ever grow old



september two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

counting bodies like sheep


do not be nervous little ones
the world is not falling apart at the seams

I do not mean to lie but things are not
what they seem (to be)
in fact these happenings may just
be a figment of some lesser god’s
imagination

and those drums coming nearer
gaining ground even while you’re sleeping
what are they even doing here
and how did they earn privilege
to beat upon the children



september two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved


footote:
loosely based on song of similar
title by A Perfect Circle
A Perfect Circle youtube video

hell freezes over


we can’t seem to get past
talking about the weather
how it lifts us up only
to tear us down
one day sipping apple-spiced tea
at café eden
the next trapped inside a
bomb shelter in aleppo

I say the weather is earth’s
spirit restless in its own creativity
slowly evolving and forever changing

you nod and look skyward
pointing at the clouds
roiling and attracting countless starlings

seeds affected by cosmic precipitation
you never know what may come next
perhaps a prophet or a prince
or a torrid dictator

ruthless storms continuously stir
inside boiling pots
reappearing as easy as they please
perpetuating change by destroying
everything in its path


september two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

until we conquer death we will never be able to broker peace


you kill for your god
you rape and maim and murder
all for your god

you carry objects in your pockets
a license to kill the guilty
along with the innocent

your god has made you judge
grand jury and executioner
and deservedly so
for he is a righteous dude
and his prejudices are warranted
even though he oftentimes transmits
disturbing orders
you have no choice but to carry out

all the real estate in the world
belongs to your god
and so you go out and capture
as many flags as you can

no questions asked


august two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

there is love in the clouds


nobody’s tending the fire
it’s just burning on its own
neither controlled nor uncontrolled
emitting a stench of indifference

massacres and coup attempts
repeat like the rising of the sun
highlighting headlines on
doorsteps as death tolls escalate
and accumulate

meanwhile the fire burns
fueled by arms deals between
friends and foes
stoked by power struggles and
brokered by corrupt politicians
enabling strategic corporations

social consciousness bombards
wireless outlets with outrage
pumping up clouds until they burst
pamphlets of love falling
like rain across a world on fire


july two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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