Thurman P. Woodfork

WHEN WAR IS DONE

Thurman P. Woodfork: When War is DoneOh, my poor, poor, suffering son…
What made you think your war was done?
Not for you, no, not for a while;
not as long as you still breathe –
that’s not War’s style.

No, he’s not finished with you yet;
he lingers to revel as you fret.
What your suffering eyes cannot see
is his deep, abiding, demonic glee
as you moan and curse another dawn.
Ah, no, my child; War has not gone.

He watches you pray for relief in vain
avidly savors your exquisite pain.
War chortles at your agonized cries,
inhales the anguish in your sighs.

Even while you draw your final breath
War devours the nectar of your death
as you struggle up from that living hell
where long your tormented spirit dwelled.

Voracious, War snarls at your release
when Death allows your suffering to cease.
He hurries on his rapacious way
in ravenous search of still living prey.

Warm light illumines the cold, still air;
Did Someone finally hear your prayer?
The nascent glow begins to increase;
is it possible you have at last found Peace?

But what if you don’t believe in God –
that He created this contentious sod?
Have you suffered all these years in vain?
Is there no reason for your torment and pain?

Is life just blind chance, a cosmic fluke;
some sort of insensate, universal juke –
the infinitesimal twitch of a Great Unknown
that not even once noticed your groans?