We Can’t Forget

We are believers

we’ve placed full faith in

a magic that uses

words to transform

chaos into the norm

human beings into

disposable things

buildings into rubble

life into death (by drone)

bodies into ash (and bone)

cultures into terror (ized)


one religion into

worse than the next

and in the center of the world

we keep making bets

and holding our breath


for more

stolen treasure

spoils of war

has it been a pleasure

weaving hatred and fear

lasting a day

lasting a year

lasting a decade

lasting a score

our memories fade

as we sneak out the door

but we can’t forget


that have long been


and we curse now the fruit

all our labors begotten

as bey sings to barry

ellen giggles with bush

they can’t cleanse their guilt

from the hindu kush

where we pushed and we pushed

Sisyphean, we

pushed and we pushed

led by blind kings

you see

being all we could be

we pushed and pushed more

pushing three cups of tea

and two decades of war

taking kids tired and poor

hungry red white and blue

saying “this is exactly what jesus would do”

placing boys running kites

in the sights of a drone

but these are not sins

for which we must atone

as we get a VA loan

and ignore the fall

leave bygones like Saigon

and ignore the call

as curtains are closing

and darkness sets in

it’s Frankenstein’s monster

and our Cheshire grin

did we try to win

or was it all a ruse

dreamt by men of tin

who get paid win or lose

and although you might choose

to forget the past

it’s there like old land mines

just waiting to blast

it’s the power amassed

many fold all these years

by bush and by cheney’s

ethical peers

and where have the tears

that we cry now long been

for Afghanistan’s women

and children

and men

and for all the war dead

and the bread that’s gone stale

and the red blood that underlies

our fairytale

it’s a check in the mail

it’s pill bottles piled high

it’s the newsmen who still ask

“they hate us, buy why?”

it’s hey, hey, my, my

it’s mcdonalds apple pie

and it’s hamid karzai

an old unocal guy

are the taliban worse

than the warlords they fight

and who are we to judge

when we teach might makes right

my heart breaks for women

from Kandahar to Kabul

but would they fair better

beneath saudi rule

in the kingdom that bombed us

twenty years ago

and kills folks like Khashoggi

for sport and for show

it’s where our dollars go

when we fill up our tank

when we bow and kiss rings

helping fill up their bank

helping them to spread hatred

from west to the east

Wahhabist Jihad

an oil fueled beast

we tell victims families

to go and pound salt

if we knew it would happen

how’s it not our fault?

If the FBI vault

is cracked open one day

just what will all

of the patriots say

flags still on display

hate still in their heart

they’ve killed all the horses

they’ve burned down the cart

we think that we’re smart

but we’re stuck on repeat

we’re stuck on repeat

we’re stuck on repeat

perhaps it’s high time

we control, alt, delete

we hit the reset

so there’s no more Saigon’s

but I hear the drums pounding

with sights on Iran

as hawks eye Eurasia

and Eastasia too

the colors have always been

red, white, and blue

here in Oceania

the land of the fee

of A-Bombs and statues

of Robert E. Lee

where we sip twisted tea

and we pay our war tax

and keep wondering why

there were terror attacks

your alternative facts

never get to the root

but reality’s out there

just take it off mute

then turn up the volume

and open your mind

and don’t be surprised

at the things that you find

like the kingsmen behind

lying us into war

after blow-back that ricocheted

right through our door

when this empire’s color’s

sped from walk to run

on a September Tuesday

two thousand and one

as we all ignored

every last smoking gun

but we’ve made ourselves dizzy now

rounding the sun

2002 and 2003

enduring, enduring, but hardly free

2004, and 2005

jingoism on overdrive

2006 and 2007

blood-lust still from nine-eleven





we created hell when we promised heaven





the war has long remained unseen





nine-eleven babies now wear army green



we wash our hands

we cut and run

we think not of the damage done

as we went round

and round the sun

and round and round

and round some more

twenty long years

of endless war

but forty since the CIA

thought up a new game

to play

in this graveyard

where empires die

where there’s far more

than meets the eye

hey, hey, my, my,

the wind chimes ring

war crimes, not freedom

we did bring

and we’ll bring still

with drones in sky

forever we

will terrorize


About soitgoes1984

I live on a small island in the middle of the Pacific ocean in the Hawaiian Kingdom which is currently illegally occupied by the American government. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
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