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On The Altar Of Mars

by Chris Sorrenti


how is it we find ourselves here again?
one step forward – two steps back
to complete the circle of aggression once more

blood barely dried
from the last sacrifice
to a moldy Roman god
all claim not to praise
but bargain with just the same
in the name of ‘kill or be killed’

and yet despite the mildew
a shiny new suit of armor each time
camouflaging the rot
we all know is there
yet comfortably or uncomfortably
justify away
in that this conflict
will be swift - conclusive

have we not learned anything
besides perfecting the art of Mars worship?
since cave dwelling ancestors
first chanted political prayers
to incite the tribe to fling stones
then later - sharpened sticks
set the circle spiraling
to new and better ways
of carrying out the sentence of
an eye for an eye – tooth for a tooth

or is it perhaps - simply
the Antichrist has been with us all along?
each Caesar incarnate holding hypnotic power
promised wealth and security for the tribe
spilled blood’s foul smell
balanced on Justice’s scales
atop the altar
by the ever tempting sweet taste
of victor over vanquished -

divide and conquer
conquer and divide

© 2003
Revised © 2016

420 hits as of September 2019


07/07/2016

Author's Note: Written at the onset of the second Gulf War, the full scale invasion of Iraq, based on faulty intelligence of weapons of mass destruction, that in the end turned out not to exist. And now the world is dealing with the consequences of that action in the form of ISIS. In addition to war clouds gathering once more over Europe; Russia deploying troops in the Crimea, NATO to Poland and the Baltic States. Sabre Rattling is still Sabre Rattling, no matter the year or form it takes.

Posted on 07/07/2016
Copyright © 2019 Chris Sorrenti

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