Archive > Vol. 7 no. 2
The Devil at War
That truce didn’t last.
The dark school dropped its people onto the road
Like dice cast
Loudly on a classroom desk lid
As silence starts. Who did that? Well, he did.
We pull away to the hills, from where we see
Thunder, dawn, or sheer
Emptiness unbolt the clouds, as the thing on high
Has its one idea:
Somewhere or here.
The Devil bikes around, helping. He does!
The Devil is not powerful. He cannot
Die. He steps on a mine, he stubs his toes.
Like hell they hurt
But he bikes on. He goes
To a gunman. Have a heart!
To free some hostages. He throws his arm
Round homesick Irish, Spanish, Canadian, UN guys
Who wake up in alarm
Alone, in the cold sunrise.
He does no harm.
He is spotted moving across
A no man’s land while corporals scream Go back!
And bullets crisscross
His mending heart, which can only ache
Or endure loss.
And is black.
We lose the Devil
During a siege, but he crops up now in a newsreel
Trying with a Red Cross man to heave some rubble
Off a shop girl,
The Devil we freeze in a frame
Is stepping back, too tired.
Hands on his head. The Devil is doing the same
Every day, while the Lord
Locks the gates of a camp, apportions blame.
Gives His Word.