Beat of Life

the drums beat, the women sing,

children dance in circles while the men

watch on with smiling eyes

in this gray dream.

in the searing heat of life

he lives outside and fights against

the others that struggle for life. sleeping on cold concrete,

bodies mashed together covered with a single dirty blanket, his only possession.

colored skin torn from beatings, living in fear and dreaming memories of blood.

only seven and scared he waits,

for the next blow against his stick body.

stolen by the rebels

taught how to soldier,

taught to kill without remorse,

taught to stop his tears for fear of hissing bullets,

but never taught to read.

now he hides in the dust jungle of the hospital

waiting for rebels to find him again.

this time he wont make the journey

out to the bush,

he will be found out with

a red bullet and iron machete.

drums pound and the women weep

the children move in dusty crop circles around them,

as men carry a thousand child soldiers to another mass grave.

history repeats itself

the loop of film again again again.

portraits of death and drums

and dancing