Ebb and Flow

We have done this before
Now we do it once more
We kick open the door
Leaving her on the floor
Petrified

Once inside, though, we find
That the enemy's mind
Is a different kind
So he's left us behind
Stupefied

Then we stay for a spell
In that bleak, blasted hell
Bagging up those who fell
So their mothers can't tell
How they died

Then, surrounded, we wait
For that moment when fate
Either early or late
Orders us out the gate
With our pride

When we go they come back
First they flee then attack
Daytime bright, nighttime black
It's not courage they lack
On their side

They've got nowhere to go
This is home: all they know
We can lay the place low
Blood in rivers may flow
Deep and wide

Still the families mourn
Ours and theirs, spirits torn
Of all hopefulness shorn
Only grief; nothing born
From Death's bride

In the end we'll depart
As we came: dumb not smart
Leaving others to start
Healing wounds and with heart
Turn the tide

Michael Murry, "The Misfortune Teller," Copyright 2005