Monday, November 5, 2012

Intro to From Now Until Muhammad Mahdi's War

Within a village on Iraqi soil
United States Marines attempt to foil
Insurgencies intent on their demise.
Set in 2006 amidst the rise
Of violence and insecurity,
It might appear as if this poetry
Is all about the escalating war.
Another theme reviewers might explore,
Is the perspective seen from Musa's view.
Like all the villagers, he wishes to
Protect his family from the violence.
As he pursues this goal, he will commence
Hostilities against these foreigners.
To justify attacks, his villagers
Fall back upon the faith that gives their lives
Such meaning. Though correct, each view deprives
The reader of the purpose of these lines.
The war is just the setting, which combines
Armed men from lands where different etiquette
Clashes, and the battle lines are set.

So when marines attempt to be polite,
Their acts are seen as challenges to fight
Or insults that are chosen to demean.
Iraqi deeds, likewise, to each marine
Appear through filters that distort intent.
Thus even though both sides are innocent
Of any malice, everybody knows
They are confronted by relentless foes
Who are devoid of all morality.
Misunderstandings make the enemy
Where none existed. In this poem, all
The characters behave in ethical
And truly honest ways. They strive for peace,
And only in the worst extremities
Do they resort to violent attacks.
When witnesses report, they state the facts
As seen from such a different point of view,
That even testimony which is true
Can be condemned as obvious flagrant lies.
Retaliation quickly multiplies......

From Now Until Muhammad Mahdi's War

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