Dead (And How We Are All Leaves)

It smells like an aquarium,

The soaked and sodden streets.

My wet shoes squish against the concrete

Like the suction of an octopus’ tentacles.

 

Beating like a steady drum,

The rain comes down hard,

Ripping life from limb,

Never asking, “Must we die?”

 

The red and gold autumn leaves

Now stained with dirt and rain

Lie trampled on the ground,

Tears of hopelessness running down their thin veins

Or is that water?

 

The edges of those fallen soldiers

Curl up, shielding themselves from the heavy feet

Of death.

 

The battlefield runs slick with blood,

Fresh from gaping, open wounds.

People run by, and silver cars speed past

Blissfully unaware of the massacre

That happened on that very street.

 

Can we ignore the cries and anguish of those

Who died for us, before us, and because of us?

Can we lift our heads, and pretend we don’t see

The bodies, the blood, and the pain?

 

They are only leaves, but they are so much more.

They are reminders, and warnings

That someday, we will all die.

But how?

 

When we die, will we be

Just another leaf,

Kicked to the side of the road by angry workers?

 

And will they be angry because we are dead,

Or will they be angry because we are dirty?

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