Poems: From The Moon Reflected Fire

NIGHT AMBUSH

By Doug Anderson


We are still, lips swollen with mosquito bites. A tree line opens out onto paddies quartered by dikes, a moon in each, and in the center, the hedged island of a village floats in its own time, ribboned with smoke. Someone is cooking fish. Whispers move across water. Children and old people. Anyone between is a target. It is so quiet you can hear a safety clicked off all the way on the other side. Things live in my hair. I do not bathe. I have thrown away my underwear. I have forgotten the why of everything. I sense an indifference larger than anything I know. All that will remain of us is rusting metal disappearing in vines. Above the fog that clots the hill ahead a red tracer arcs and dims. A black snake slides off the paddy dike into the water and makes the moon shiver.


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