Spangled

You think you know but you don’t know
shit about what we’ve been through—

You think we got here only yesterday, but we jumped ship
long before that voyage and landed in the bayou.

You think our backs would break from counting beans,
harvesting fruit before our fingers grazed first dew.

You think below the deck, on KP duty, meant to shine
the captain’s shoes: but never rising in rank, in the crew.

You think fling, short time, good time, Johnny come
quick and gone. Cheap roll in the hay? Screw you— I don’t do.

You think old school, passé, uncool. I beg your pardon:
above your designer waistband, your butt crack shows in review.

You think the fireworks spread their veils of weeping willow
just for you? World upon world of the wounded: their histories accrue.

 

In response to Via Negativa: Sailor's Psalm.

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