Without Firing A Shot

She gave me great pain
And said make something wondrous
That you may know life and
Thrive in my benevolence.
And I wish I could die
But I am too well-made.
I wish I could cry
But I am too disconnected.
And I wish I could wither
But I am too stubborn
To give up the fight
While I still have breath
So I lash out and defy
This petty world to crush me
That I may know peace
From her betrayal.
Yet here I am standing,
Unanswered and unchallenged,
Choking on bitter fumes
And swallowing stones.
Could she not have
Killed me in my sleep,
That I might never know
That I never mattered?
Much less stand here,
Made the fool, watching
Her dance away, laughing
With her new paramour.
Forgive me, m’lady
If I seem ungrateful
That you offer your hand
In hopeful friendship.
But my every cell aches
For you’ve filled me with poison
And left me to perish
By the side of the road.
And I cannot forget that
When I last took your hand
It was to promise that
I would cherish you always.
Yet I am here and
You are still gone.
All that remain are bones
And the dead or the dying.
And one angry, wounded
But defiant old soldier
Who lost the war
Without firing a shot.

Kings Mountain, NC
June 21, 2006

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