To Mars

The drum, the drum, the drum plays on. In rage
And greed and lust it’s calling out the guns.
What history is writ without the page
Besprinkled with the blood of countless sons?
And names they had, forgotten now, but names
That blazed like sunrise in the distant East.
O Mars, look e’en today: The shell that maims
The human flesh will burn the vict’ry feast
‘Till ash is left within out mouths. What plea
Can stem your trembling thirst for human blood?
Is there no prayer to set our children free?
Is there no Spotless Lamb to dam the flood?
In all things must your appetite be fed?
This night is black. I fear the dawn is red.

[I wrote this poem today, as part of The Holy Father’s call for a day of prayer and fasting for peace in Syria.]


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