My Brain's Cell

Trapped in a place where
Men have died slow
Deaths. A cell with
Bars of bone locks
In the fear.

No vents to let air out
Or in to breathe.

Pulsating veins beat
Loud yet ears can’t hear
The din of cries from
Down below where
Caged voice howls.

No sign of life in
Tomb, a cell with
Bars of bone.

My brain in pain sees
Black wall gleam with
Names of those
Who died on Viet soil, littered
With fake flowers and mini-flags.

Roiling tears and muted cries,
Inside a polished tomb, no
Doors or exit signs.

Black granite traps the darkness,
No rays of light to cast
Shadows on bloodied floor.
Thwarting chances to dance with
Silhouettes on the wall—ghosts
Of once living things.

No one to hear
The screams…
Voice cracks…as
Bullet speaks…bringing…
A final calm…in my cell,
Strewn with splintered bars of bone.

Roberto Pachecano, 2003






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