The Raptures of the Weapon
We, the onlookers hover & howl
but the packets of death fly free ignoring all.
Without gravity or guilt, could
a life could be like this?
We share it, an almost obligatory joy as
light pirouettes within the CPUs
& drones circle targets.
Missiles must fly.
Oiled & polished, the gun longs
for the caress of its trigger.
Knife-hilts are engraved
with their prayers of purpose.
Each killing thing has its destiny
while I am nothing much, dodged
the whetstones for decades.
So by a rutted trail watch this
malice-free desecration with an unhealthy interest.
I admit it has a dire beauty
& there is an art
deep in any despoil.
There is a relationship, the intent
& the target. Fire & steel,
remote detonations, the casual coupling.
Narratives are annealed.
Amongst the mortars & swords
words too have been sharpened to maim.
Last summer I bled & the wound refused to seal.
But have I too laid waste across this warfare called living?
Perhaps this is DNA stuff, small predators like me,
lacking fang or claw, we also scratch plans. Aspire to savagery.
But pleased to say with little result. Across this imperfect life
I have failed at that clean certainty that lubricates the greater hates.
Over 40 years Wicks has performed widely across the globe. Published in over 350 different magazines, anthologies & newspapers across 28 countries in 15 languages. Conducts workshops & runs Meuse Press which focuses on poetry outreach projects like poetry on buses & poetry published on the surface of a river. His 14th book of poetry is Belief (Flying Islands, 2019).