Washington’s Wonder Warriors

Some Weapons of Wonder they wanted to wield
to slaughter the soldier or use as a shield;
from marvelous metals and magic annealed;
but never their cost to the people revealed.
Like onions, the layers of protest were peeled
away until, stark-naked, Peace bowed and kneeled,
while more wealth accrued to the truly well-heeled
whose predator practices hardly concealed
the Law of the Jungle to which they appealed.
Their contracts for weapons of war, signed and sealed,
earned money while loathing about them congealed;
and decades rolled past but the wounds never healed;
yet, “no reverse gear” meant they never would yield
until the World lay six foot deep in a field.

Michael Murry, "The Misfortune Teller," Copyright © 2023