Jay Sizemore’s poem ponders why the U.S. is involved in war after war, a question that becomes increasingly relevant as the country continues interfering in the Middle East.

Jay Sizemore reads “What War Is Good For”

What War Is Good For

By Jay Sizemore

War keeps the ground in business. The leaves expect no adoration for dying, they parachute down from the limbs in slow, spiraling arcs of red and gold, each death a signal flare in reverse.

War keeps sacrifice in style. Like the leaves, kids leave home and are blown in haphazard loops toward different destinations that end in the same place: Khaki pants and fatigues.

War is a cure for boredom. Flying drones in a video game: Christians versus Muslims, the American attempt at making horror civilized assaults my skin until I’m desensitized, awash in zeroes and ones.

War is the prayer that hangs on my tongue like a hair I can’t find. I see the torrents of blood bled onto the desert rock, the truckloads of people driven and dumped into the mass graves

and I think of the factory workers responsible for each machine gun shell. I think of the masked women polishing the chrome warheads to such a pristine shine. I think of the manicured hands that set the pin in each grenade. War keeps food on America’s plate, just as it holds the curved knife to her throat amid a forest of falling things she once was convinced would grow back.

Jay Sizemore is the founder of Crow Hollow Books and his chapbook Confessions of a Porn Addict is available online. He lives in Nashville, TN with his wife. Find him at www.jaysizemore.com.

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