by Charles Kesler

When in serpent's embrace
he wants to kill her.
When in saint's embrace
he wants to adore her.
When in soldier's embrace
he wants the peace
to last forever,
the momentary explosions,
of roses,
not of blood,
the red flaming pain,
the stain of yesterday.
When in celibate's embrace
he wants his penis back.
War is a cruel kid
who never grows up.

Copyright 2024 by Red River Review. First Rights Reserved. All other rights revert to the authors.
No work may be reproduced or republished without the express written consent of the author.