Lawrence Beck


If Only The Taliban Could Kill The Real Bad Guys - Poem by Lawrence Beck

Well, here we are now.We're in Helmand
Province.There's a soldier lying dead
Beside the road.Seemingly from far away,
Most likely, he's American, and we must
Fathom how we feel.Nobody ever
Asked him here.The locals told the Taliban
That he was coming up the road.They
Cheered the moment that he died, and we,
As decent human beings, can't condemn
The way they felt.The kid did not belong
In Helmand.People in this place, like
People everywhere, should have the chance
To live their lives as they desire.Little
Shitty Yankee grunts should not be lording
Over them, but, then again, this kid's a kid.
He signed up for four years of service
So he'd get his college paid.He didn't
Know a Taliban, a Pashtun, from a
Tajik or an Uzbek when he stepped
Out of the plane.In fact, he never did.
He died for nothing by this road, and that's
A waste.We should be sad.We can't be angry
With the locals, cannot say the kid was wrong.
The wrong was done in Washington
By smug and soulless bureaucrats,
Who think that they should rule the world,
And blithely send their nation's paupers
Off to slaughter along roads in lands,
Like Helmand, places they're unable
To pick out on maps, and can't imagine
Actually are occupied by equals of themselves.

Topic(s) of this poem: war


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Poem Submitted: Tuesday, January 14, 2020



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