How to hang medals in war or peacetime

silhouette of circus people

Photo by Mariano Ruffa on Pexels.com

 

I have seen how sheep are tagged by executioners
each number is random, an unwanted earring
and yet they queue one by one and soon
the tick tock drip drop blood stops.
Lights in their eyes turn to pearls
then another cage latch rattles
A border collie folds grass
playing with children
here come the Earls,
Rat-a-tat-tat
Bow wow
medals
hang
wet
Collie-tongued
I have seen how Holocausts make hills of sewn limbs.
Each number is a star interwoven into our fabric,
they queued one by one till gone gone gone,
liberation is the latch of the caged mind
soil should not reek of charcuteries,
generals should not be fragrant
notes of musk or patchouli
but they did and they did
making love in medals
hanging love-wet
ghosting god
living holy
unholy
soil
holy.
I have seen immaculate men be knighted with medals
Paedophiles garlanded with clean swords how poetic,
clean as a slave washed once for auctioneer scales.
I have seen fat hams of men with eyes like bone
run marathons and abuse corpses whilst at rest.
Are these the medals we want to hang?
Are these the people who never hung?
Are these the tolerable furies you hid?
In the Warsaw ghetto of Nazi songs
well I know violins, I know well
how strings throb and fasten
like meat strung for sale
that won medals for
tenderness for you
Is this tender
Is this real
Order of
British
Empire
Is this
You?

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