To kill a Bird


root - Posted on 31 December 1969

by Charles Houston©2004 /Po Poets Project


The first things I killed were ants


Then I killed a bird


I killed bird after bird after bird


I've hunted deer


I've hunted rabbit


To my father and me it became a habit


I became the property of Uncle Sam


He shipped me off to Vietnam


The people there had to be free


Found more than half were hunting me


In just the nineteenth of my years


Crossing the threshold of all my fears


Often fighting back my tears


Friends that had my back


Toe tagged in a plastic sack


While hugging the ground amongst the ants


Still,--like a rabbit praying for one more chance


In paralyzing fear


With the eyes of a wounded deer


At that precise moment to me it occurred


"That will never kill another bird"

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