Mission

by Ralph Monday

Those warriors that died at Normandy
and Utah Beach, the owl cries for them.
In the forest at the mountain’s base,
hear an ocean and more than half a century
away, nature congeals at the thought.
The owl flies a night mission, like B-52s
over Berlin, its target a mouse, nocturnal
hare, the planes from long ago winging
to plant a bulls eye on Mein Kampf madness.
The ocean separates the two, time dissolves
tissue and metal. Yet, energies linger,
recorded in earth and rock, blood and bone
the way the calling owl knows rooted instinct—
something deeper, essence drawn by gravity’s
well, savagery lying coiled in the heart
of every living thing—chilled whisper that makes
the lover start and slide deeper into the covers,
while the warrior, mad or sane, grinds teeth,
eats the earth’s constitution laid down in hot
tidal pools before a human’s first tremor
left footprints washed away in sand.

Musical composition by Victor D. Sandiego

Ralph Monday is Professor of English at Roane State Community College in Harriman, TN., and has published hundreds of poems in over 100 journals. A chapbook, All American Girl and Other Poems, was published in July 2014. A book Empty Houses and American Renditions was published May 2015 by Aldrich Press. A Kindle chapbook Narcissus the Sorcerer was published June 2015 by Odin Hill Press.

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