Enemy Mine

26 May

 

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Enemy Mine

by L. Stewart Marsden

 

I have you in my sights;

the crosshairs tremble ‘cross your head and chest,

buffeted by nerves, a throbbing head, and hot wind from the south

that blows in grainy billows along my face

into my eyes;

neither do I know or want to know you;

you are enigma to me;

unaware that with a holding of breath

a re-aimed focus onto your distant, two-dimensioned image,

a slow but steady squeeze of the trigger and

your surprised shadowy sepia self will stop,

look hence,

and fall into a crumpled heap of native garb and blood.

Your family, your history, your hopes and ambitions

are irrelevant to me.

You are the cardboarded image of my enemy,

the one I practice on for hours a day,

sighting, aiming, guessing and squeezing off

round after round,

missing all ’round your head, erupting in the sandy dunes behind you.

You are the reason I am here,

in this desolate place — hot, arid, without redemption of any kind.

You are the one who, given the chance, would gladly change with me,

and be the targeter and not the targeted,

the aimer, not the aimed at,

the one who survives the day

to lift your children o’er your head

and squeeze them till they laugh with glee

and beg you over do it more.

You are in my sights.

And nothing else of who or what you are

to those who wait on your return

who wait your booming basso voice

laced with richness and good wit,

with stories, long and short, to tell

with reverence for your long-lost friends

who, like you, waited unawares

while they were in these sights of mine

and soon to be no more.

 

Copyright © by Lawrence S. Marsden, 26 May, 2014
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