First Anniversary of US Invasion of Iraq

Remember the springtime
     that always comes in every desert
The perennial grace of beauty
     as a bright blossom on a harsh hillside
     as a soldier of an occupying force
     pausing from duty
     crouching in some act of kindness
to a native child.

Remember the events unfolding one year ago
     Wanton death comes sometimes
     Vast destruction born of foolish pride,
          or fear
     Oceans of suffering washing the desert.

Remember everything in which you are in community
     which is to say everything
     is your community of memory and hope
So remember.
     what part of that community
     called our country
     unfolded in another part
     called Iraq
     one year ago.

Remember the springtime
     Wanton death comes sometimes.
     So does wanton life.

Though vast destruction and suffering is sometimes born of foolish pride
     or fear
Yet the springtime comes in every desert
A perennial grace of beauty
     as a bright orange blossom on a harsh hillside
     as a soldier...

Humanity may end war someday.
Not in my lifetime, or my children's, but
Maybe someday. I don't know.
In the meantime, I know what I remember.

El Paso, 2004.03.24

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