War Games

photo with permission by Hasan Almasi on Unsplash

War Games

I’m not an island hopper, even in time of war.
Didn’t your mother tell you that’s what a basement’s for?
Wherever you may wander, wherever you may roam,
the best place to dodge missiles is right there in your home.

So reinforce your bunkers, store up delicious rations
so you can withstand war games of the leaders of our nations.
Naughty little spoiled boys who cannot learn to share
will not heed entreaties of those of us who care.

Even our democracy is ruled by a throne.
He gnaws away at joints of beef and throws us all a bone.
With no other agenda than playing at his game,
he does not know the difference between infamy and fame.

So build up your defenses. Reinforce your door,
for he and his rich cronies would profit from a war.
And all the brave young soldiers sweating in the sun?
He’ll take away their benefits after they are done.

Once the war is over, they’ll rebuild the world again
with their construction companies while they sit drinking gin.
Counting profits from the opportunities they’ve found,
they’ll enjoy their hillside mansions as we hunker underground.

https://ragtagcommunity.wordpress.com/2019/05/29/rdp-wednesday-island/
https://fivedotoh.com/2019/05/29/fowc-with-fandango-war/
https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2019/05/29/your-daily-word-prompt-wherever-may-29-2019/
https://wordofthedaychallenge.wordpress.com/2019/05/29/delicious/

51 thoughts on “War Games

  1. lifelessons Post author

    Every time I swear I’ll bend the prompts to a more optimistic theme, but the words just seem to want to go together in a more pessimistic way. Next time! Promise.

    Aha!! “War” was your contribution to the day, so it’s your fault, too.

    Like

    Reply
        1. Marilyn Armstrong

          The Dems are doing that “LET’S GET TOGETHER AND SHOOT OURSELVES IN BOTH FEET” thing that they do. If there’s ONE time they needed to function with some organization and planning, this has to be it. And they are being rabble.

          Liked by 1 person

          Reply
    1. lifelessons Post author

      I’m always more pessimistic in my poetry than in my own mind, though. The prompts make me do it! I figure as I’m sure that you do that the best we can do after voting right and writing pessimistic poems is to live as positively and to be as happy as we can be. The world has always had its demons. The only way we win over them in the long run is to mount the offensive by trying to be the opposite.

      Liked by 1 person

      Reply
        1. lifelessons Post author

          Yes, I don’t think anyone would describe me as downbeat other than an occasional reader. You know the thing about writing is that it pulls out all sides of us. A sort of personal psychotherapy. What readers don’t necessarily see is the balance. I think all-in-all that I’m an optimist.

          Liked by 1 person

          Reply
          1. koolkosherkitchen

            The way I see writing is that the readers should see the message in the writing itself, rather than the profile of the author, even though the author’s thoughts, feelings, and experiences obviously play a role. In some ways we all echo Flaubert: “Emma is I.”

            Like

            Reply
            1. Marilyn Armstrong

              I think we need to see both the author, the story, AND the message. It works better that way — in my opinion. Regardless, the author is always there, whether you are aware of him or her or not.

              Liked by 1 person

            2. koolkosherkitchen

              I came to realize that, Judy, but a funny episode came to mind. At the age of 17 – 18, I was writing short stories that were political satire thinly disguised as science fiction. They were circulating around anonymously for obvious reasons – danger! – in what was called “samizdat,” i.e. copied by hand. One day a friend brought one of my stories with a comment, “Look how this guy is writing!” When I asked, “What makes you think it’s a guy?” He said, “A woman would never write like that!” Just an anecdote…

              Like

            3. koolkosherkitchen

              Political statements were worth 10 – 15 years of hard labor, which I almost earned eventually, for other activities, but somehow got on the Senator’s List, which bought my freedom for grain.

              Like

            4. koolkosherkitchen

              Senator Barry Goldwater, a staunch supporter of Civil Rights movement and the Libertarian party, as a member of Foreign Policy committee, initiated the Senator’s List in 1969. It became a vehicle of negotiating with USSR which was short on grain at that time, after Khruschev’s experiments with corn. Names of refuseniks (people like myself who were refused exit visas) were smuggled to the West, and basically, so many people were bought for so much grain. I was a refusenik from 1971 to 1978, and my name somehow got on the list, I was only one of many.

              Liked by 1 person

            5. lifelessons Post author

              Have you written about this? I remember the term but was not aware of this program. Were you married and was your family able to come with you? How did you decide where to go? Did you come to the States at once or were you in Europe for awhile and then emigrated?

              Liked by 1 person

            6. koolkosherkitchen

              I was divorced, and I did not emigrate; I was expelled as the “enemy of the people.” I still have the original exit visa with the stamp of KGB (the secret police), rather than the immigration office that says “Leave the USSR in 10 days.” I left with my son who was 6 1/2 years old at the time. I had to wait first in Vienna, then in Rome for a few months to process paperwork. Meanwhile, my mother, may she rest in peace, sold everything the family had and bribed immigration clerks to speed up their exit visas process, so the family followed me a month later. It was my mother’s decision to go to the States, and I did not want to be separated from the family. I don’t feel I have the right to write about it, since I was only a very tiny cog in a dissident / resistance movement.

              Like

            7. lifelessons Post author

              We have only our own stories to write about.. and whatever they are, we are the only person who can write it. I for one would love to have you write about it. Did you want to leave at the time? If you could have stayed, would you have, given that they considered you an enemy of the people? Did you speak any English? If you want me to stop asking questions, I will….

              Liked by 1 person

            8. koolkosherkitchen

              I am always happy to answer your questions, dear Judy, and I appreciate your interest in my humble person. By the time they kicked me out, they had held me in limbo for 7 years, refusing an exit visa. Finally, they arrested me and interrogated for 5 months, which made it clear that they were “constructing a case” for anti-soviet propaganda and subversive activities, 10 – 15 years of hard labor. That’s when the Senator’s List came through, and all of a sudden I received an order to leave in 10 days. I came here with an MA in English, so I started teaching right away, on the 2nd day, actually.

              Liked by 1 person

            9. slmret

              This has been a most interesting exchange. I believe you have every right to write about your story if you wish to do so. Without meaning to exert any pressure, this is an important part of our history as well as of yours and of Ukraine’s, and it must not be forgotten or repeated. Thank you for sharing here!

              Liked by 2 people

            10. koolkosherkitchen

              Thank you so much for interest, dear friend. It is definitely an important part of history, but much has been written about it by important people and famous dissidents, while I am only a tiny cog in a substantial and influential resistance movement.

              Liked by 1 person

            11. slmret

              It is the tiny cogs that make up dissident movements. The movement is strengthened by the force of each of the other tiny cogs. I had heard of refusedniks, but not of the case-building for years of hard labor at that time (I always thought that came earlier). I knew of the people mentioned in your comments, but not of the exchange of people for grain. And now we are seeing slightly different versions of the same story playing out again in the separation of children, the tariffs, travel bans, etc. The more we know about the past, the more horrific the current situation becomes. Again, without meaning to pressure you, as I’m sure it’s difficult to write about, I have appreciated your openness in the above exchange, and have learned a great deal (and I’ve been here even more Saturdays than has Judy!) Thank you for sharing your story!

              Liked by 2 people

            12. koolkosherkitchen

              Thank you for your lovely comment, dear friend. It’s not as much difficult to write about it, as it is not seemly, I feel, for someone as inconsequential as myself. Thank you for your interest and compassion, dear friend!

              Like

            13. lifelessons Post author

              What a difference between politicians back then and now!!I I remember Johnson beating Goldwater…but as my family were Democrats and Goldwater ran as a Republican, I never thought of him as being a Libertarian. You probably know more about U.S. politics during that age than I did as I was just graduating from high school and going to my first years of college. I didn’t know until much later about Johnson’s policies in the Congo, etc. You know, I just tended to think of Democrats as the progressive, humanitarian party and to not consider much else. I know my father, a staunch Democrat, said he was going to vote for Goldwater and my sister was furious with him. I wish I would have asked him “Why?”

              Liked by 1 person

  2. lifelessons Post author

    The only reason I think we should see the author is if she has friends like Dolly who always fear the stories are about her and then worry! Ha. I issue my reminders that it isn’t necessarily me for that reason.

    Like

    Reply
    1. Marilyn Armstrong

      Call me crazy (and you wouldn’t be the first), but I think whether or not we are writing about personal things that happened to you, you, me, ALL of us — on some level we really ARE writing about ourselves. If not about what we’ve done or plan to do, than about things we’ve thought about or things that friends have done or talked about. Because I think as everyone who has ever beaten this concept into my stubborn head has said: WRITE WHAT YOU KNOW. You don’t have to know it by doing it. You can know from hearing about it, seeing it, thinking about it, pretending how you would behave HAD you done. But if it isn’t on some major level important to us, we can’t make it real to others. It’s what’s wrong with so many bad writers who don’t get what’s wrong with their writing, that they are writing about something that happened a long time ago, but they can’t seem to put themselves into that soul and make it real. It’s not about language. It’s about FEELING.

      But you can call me crazy. Lots of people already have. I can live with it.

      Like

      Reply
      1. lifelessons Post author

        I definitely agree that you have to write about what you know. I have a friend who writes wonderful books–all about researched periods, but she has come to know those periods. I have never been good at writing fiction. I always need to base everything on myself or those I know, but I embellish, hyperbolize, augment. Unless it is memoir. Then it is necessary to stay close to the truth.

        Like

        Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.