somewhere in Flanders/Afghanistan
in Flanders Fields some shit
flowers, crosses the dead etc. etc.
but the dead do not speak john.
sometimes they leave letters;
sometimes they leave a room full
of porn and candy wrappers
that someone else has to clean.
carthago delenda est, so on so forth.
you served our country, whatever
but I'm tired of hearing you go on
about birds and sunsets and torches
and god knows what else.
I'd rather meet your hundred year old
ghost on remembrance day.
when everyone's drinking to forget
the shit we volunteered to do
in a country that was not our own.
I'll buy you a beer though I don't really
drink much since my wife left,
don't sleep much either.
nobody sleeps well after
it would have been easier
to die in afghanistan
under cover of flames
smoke the colour of sand,
now you envy
For the entire
a handful of seeds
every few steps
and the crows
as a blessing,
BENJAMIN HERTWIG's first book of poems, Slow War, is coming out in 2017. His writing has appeared or is forthcoming on NPR, in The New York Times, Word Riot, THIS, Pleiades, and the Literary Review of Canada. He won the 2015 Prairie Fire Non-Fiction Award and the 2015 Glass Buffalo Poetry Prize.