YOUR HANDS

What does it feel like, on your hands,
and around the well-manicured fingernails,
the blood of a 100 thousand persons
even their names not known to you,
killed in their homes and in their streets?
you say, to bring democracy,
delivering them from a bloody tyrant –
you say, they must be grateful. 

What do you say to slide the weight
of this still endless carnage
onto the conscience of a nation
that never intended harm to other peoples
but trusted you? 

How do you smooth your tone of voice
when you send our family folks to shoot
and to get chopped and burnt and blinded
in the optional war you took a notion to? 

And all the fibs it took
corrupting Colin and Condi and Congress;
and Tony, that was truly creative
(though not good enough for Old Europe
And a hundred and fifty other nations). 

Those are some hands you got.

From The Long Shadow of the Bush
By JK Burnham