Literary Yard

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‘The Cost of Peace’ and other poems

By: Richard LeDue

The Cost of Peace

We’re in a war of attrition
with ourselves,
but at least it all led
to department store Christmas commercials,
gift wrapped electric can openers,
two jobs a week
just to lose a staring contest
with an artificial X-mas tree,
missing a branch
because it was 50% off at a thrift store,
and a high school sweetheart
gone grey as a leftover screw
from a book shelf put together
without ever looking at the instructions,
only for us all to surrender,
signing an armistice the size of our brains,
filled with the prices of everything
we can’t afford.

The Pine Over There

A pine tree so still
that it must pine for a breeze,
even if snow lies as supine
as it can,
quiet as a page without words,
until wolves on their nocturnal hunt
write a love poem with their tracks.

Another One Alone

The found him mummified
by the salt water air of the ocean.

A photo of his ex-wife
probably the last thing he looked at,

as he felt his heart betray him
one last time,

and the news reports afterwards
referred to him as a traveller and adventurer.

They were trying to liven up his death,
making it sound more romantic than most,

because his ghost ship an obvious metaphor,
while he was just another one

alone among walls, believing
more in love than tomorrow.

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