It sat in a familiar room in an unfamiliar body

and wondered why it had dreamt

of this insignificant moment.

Years ago its frontal lobe

reversed and now a machine

guides its mind. The mind

where this existence was invented.

Language predicated being

and reminded it that no matter

could ever be destroyed.

Though thoughts

feared non-thoughts

all the same.


you are not

you are not safe

you are not

in the suburbs

you are not

wearing pants

your face is not safe

from the ridicule

you are not


from the pain

your parents are not


they worked hard

so you could die

in an empty lot

you are not

That’s What They Get

before Wikileaks was banned by our government

I went on their website in the Paul Robeson library

and played a video called “Collateral Murder”

dirty water streamed down the window panes featuring

the supposedly revitalized city we stared

into computer screens on my display pixels

stood static as I witnessed footage

of the slaughter

of innocents

my countrymen howled ooh rah

with joy as explosive rounds

pierced the thin doors of a Toyota

mini van (the same kind those airmen’s wives

drove their precious kids to school with)

carrying small Iraqi children

in grainy sepia I saw their fathers’ bodies

disappear beneath smoke

as students around me lounged in cushioned chairs

they typed loudly and I cried silently

and the American soldiers on the ground

thought themselves American heroes

evacuating limp little bodies riddled with holes

punctured by projectiles from omnipresent helicopters

inside the floating death machine an American said

“that’s what they get for bringing children to a warzone”

turns out the victims’ obliterated fathers held cameras not rpg’s

that the terrorists were really journalists

that’s what they get for being born in a warzone

above pools of black liquid

into pools of red

that’s what they get