Sunday, June 6, 2010


A grenade was tossed into a soldier's pocket.

He paused, aware of the sudden weight on his

buttocks. It could have been an orange or an

apple,but, no, it was a grenade, a metallic fruit,

although not a gift from an aunt forced upon

him at a family gathering when he was eight

to alleviate his intense boredom. Nor a stone

that had levitated from the Mesopotamian


It happened spontaneously, not like

a thunder storm when the sky is suddenly

blackened by fierce clouds unsatisfied with

occupation and demanding autonomy, freedom,

but more like a snake crushing an ankle as

one passes a burnt-out shrub. Then soldiers

adjacent to him, tense and compliant, heard

a curious pop like a balloon bursting at

a birthday party where the festivities go

on until the mothers have had enough.

(This poem first appeared online at

The News Verse News.)