Wednesday, September 1, 2010

judas in the trenches

Judas sang a song of the gutter to me,
whispered line by whisper.
The grime, dirt, mud, and shit covered both of us
as the soil of the night was sundered;
Judas opened his mouth
and let me see him eat
the last tart he'd bought in Normandy.

We joked uneasily about the blood
between his teeth.
He seemed - almost -
as nervous as me.

And when the small echoing note
became a repeater
in that symphony in the unquiet dark,
when the quiet chorus
of water running in the trenches
between the starkness
of the stripped naked trees
sang in my ears, when what was once reloaded
became automatic: a pounding sore,
I began to know - as I quoted Homer and some of David's psalms,
that I would be
one of the dead ones
watched only by the salt-filled eyes of the night.

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