All day the jets have rifled through the air,
Drilled through the lessons that I’ve tried to give.
Scabbing the blue with vapour for a scar,
Passing the dummy-bombed hamlets with a wave.
I’ve comforted myself. I’m not so bad,
I’ve thought, in spite of the raised voice, the sudden squall
If discipline and strictness knocks them dead
At least I’m not out there learning to kill.
And each frail cliche rears to the surface.
Writhes in the strong light, dies, and having sunk
Leaves me to know I work for who in office
Shuts books to put more octane in the tank.
What I would does not possess our minds.
This boy, the fat one, has been rifled too.
Belongs to the plane amd every bomb it sends,
Absorption melted from his ragged row
Of words. Just now he, my bluntest blade
Inevitably felled first in any game,
Looked from the tortured page, the word-wrought board,
To a sky where steel hammered its own scream –
by Christopher Meredith