Near Misses

I’ve heard the angry bumble bee buzz by
My ear, to leave me thinking with a sigh,
That just a little further to one side
And I’d have lost an ear, an eye, or died.

Someone whom I had never tried to hurt
Had nearly left me lying in the dirt,
A victim of a patriotic plot
Designed to keep me tethered to my lot.

A stranger in the tree line taking aim
Had barely missed collecting me as claim
To all I might have seen and done; but then,
I lived because he missed, so I might pen

Some verse expressing puzzlement and rage
At why I served, like others of my age,
As dupe and tool of erstwhile statesmen dumb
Who beat the truth about the head till numb,

While spouting endless lies, both crass and lewd,
“Explaining” why those pooches they have screwed
Have turned to bite the bare and bogus butts
Of “strategists” forever stuck in ruts.

The game of saving face continues on
Because the ones who’ve left us all in pawn
To death and debt accruing each new day
Cannot envision any other way

To sell themselves as masters of our fate:
A missing meal served on an empty plate
Together with the bill, a perfect fit
For us, the only target they can hit.

Michael Murry, "The Misfortune Teller," Copyright © 2009