Upon Reading Kathis Favorite Poem

and the violence to the maintenance
    (“he used the wrench as a hammer”)
of the berms
    (“he got it all into a single sandbag”)
the water overtops
it washes silt into the cucumber garden
    (“the tomatoes used to be so sweet”)
the tubes fire
    (“sergeant, they want the watering”)
the counterbattery comes
    (“fire-for-effect on … my … pos”)
he calls the friendly fire, the fratricide, the not-yet-suicide
the failure to stand uprightly
the failure to speak upright
the failure to seek
    (“in dance, the blade into the bull’s neck” … the colonel is dead)
the 9.2 meters per second squared
on 2 wheels requiring balance, begging a soft touch and grace
the spurring, the cropping, the cursing, the neck-wrenching
the savaging
the barnfire screams from soft muzzles with big teeth on orange carrots
there is the seeking of fear 
    (“erik, they are fast, fear is normal”)
pursues fear everywhere, all around, all over
except in the headspace & timing
multiple calibres these multiplying years
there are combat multipliers
we have spent casings in the pine beds
of the axis of advance, the trail, the creek, the draw, the wadi
the metals precious, discarded, not policed
the pretty soldiers in their earth tones
the shit on a shingle
the girls in their summer dresses
hence, the eating of one’s gun

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