It starts with a letter.

Black ink on white paper

so fragile and delicate

informing me

of my



The shattering of glass

White paper turning red

Screams and cries

render my ears





fills my ears

buzzing gossip

leave my tongue

parched with fear

as I reread the parchment of my doom.

I swallow back my words

Choking on them


Unable to speak.

I am not dead, I want to scream as they wheel me into a mortuary

I am alive.

Yet no one hears.

Instead, they make me pretty

Doll me up in new clothes (crisp clean clothes)

Give me toys to play with (shiny new toys)

And cut my hair

Not caring that I am a hares-breadth away from having my head cut off.

They heap my body into a pile

of other pieces of flesh

with no names or voice

We are shipped off in a coffin

to our




stay in their coffins, never feeling the sunlight, vampires that wither away like ashes in the morn

Others break out

Rise from the dead

Like Jesus, we are crucified for our people.

We are ants marching in a line, bees in a hive, sacrificing for our queen

We raze the ground with anger and burn everything in sight

We burn ourselves,

Turning into ashes in the morn.

We are tin soldiers marching to battle

Our hearts pound to the beat of a drum

As we carry our guns

We pray for one more day under the sun

Our lives have only just begun

Please, I don't want to be done.

We are criscrossing veins full of blood, our lives intertwined intricately

If one vein is cut

We suffer

Or die.

We don't want to die

So we pray every day

that we are the lucky ones

Who in the game of life win the die roll

But we do not know what winning is

Which die to root for

until we lose

We see heads cracked open in watermelons during summer

We see grenades in water balloon fights

We see shame in honor

We see death in life

We are not alive

We are the living dead

Toy soldiers

in tin battle

marching to our sunsets.