Gary Jacobson

WHAT IS WAR?

What is war,
Good men say they abhor?
Why do a country’s men worship at its altar?
Why do they let the sanctity of life falter?
Is killing those that oppose a Holy sacrament,
To God’s of war in self-fulfilling commandment?

What is war?
Is it hatreds festering deep
Making enangered hearts to arms leap
Growing rage into man’s heart seep?
Is life held so cheap?

Is war a youthful, masochistic rite,
A bastion promoting freedom and light?
Does war make boys into men,
A resource of patriotic pride in saber rattling din
Growing fuzzy warm feelings fostered within.

Does war rid this recalcitrant world of sin?
Is it the stuff of heroism that writers pen,
In policing others not believing like us that offend,
For a lifetime values of a generation rend?

Is war veterans standing tall and proud,
Silver heads rising high above milling crowd,
Eyes filled rife with tears and glory,
Honor the main theme of its fabled story?

War is men writhing gut-shot in the mud,
A dying buddy’s head covered with blood,
A mother’s tears
Her lost love in a gut full of fears?

What is war?
I really want to know.
How do we select who is to be our next foe?
Does war live on in a life full of nightmares
Memories from “back there”
Prolonging eternal scares?

Is war memories born in battle,
Relived forevermore in a bottle,
To shut the door
Leading back to that war?

Why does war fill every waking moment
With day and night dread,
With ghosts of the dying and dead,
Does war live in deeds that last a lifetime,
Robbing the rest of your life of its sweetest rhyme?

With actions forevermore
In mortal conscience bled
A year of imagined blood shed
Filling your head.

Soldiers saw buddies like flowers fall
Soldiers of war retreated into deadened pall
Becoming too used to the killing,
To the fevered jungle chilling.

Is war a reality that comes in grim night
A pitched battle soldiers eternally must fight?
A firefight erupting in every loud noise
Making men suddenly hit the dirt,
Doomed forever to live in a world of hurt.

This then my brother is known of war
And will be forevermore.
War obliterates all life’s erstwhile goals.
In our hearts war woe doles,
War lingers in our minds in foul constancy arose.
War forevermore decays spent souls.

All who fought in war know it well,
War is unadulterated,
Unmitigated
Hell!