Two poems by Diana Raab

Jet Blue Flight#1 to LAX

 

I sit in the second row 

beside some army guy—

probably my nephew’s age 

and all I think about of is how I abhor war.

 

I imagine him hunkered down

on some foreign battlefield, frozen,

rifle in hand. Waiting.

 

How I miss him—

remembering his childhood 

 

when we drove to the zoo

ate cotton candy, watched snakes

and how mesmerized he was  

by the slow moving sloths.

 

His awe, honest smile and blue eyes,

wisps of blond hair framing his innocent face.

I miss all that. I hate war.

 

What awe does he know these days

as he defends our country

and trains others to do the same.

 

No news from him in years—

akin to a long forgotten love, disappeared

as he succumbs to larger life issues

 

of combat. Today, early evening, 

I rock in the same chair 

I rocked him as a baby: 

salty tears on my face,

 

waiting for the plane 

that will bring him to me —

to see those eyes again, vibrant,

blue. And those dimples. 

 

© Diana Raab

 

 

The Trigger

 

Who will pull it

when it needs to be?

 

Who will offer you a bullet? 

Give you permission?

Or tell you to stop?

 

Who will kneel over you

— your childhood trauma,

your mother’s detached indifference,

the grandmother who committed suicide in the next room? 

 

Who will stop you?

Who will tell you 

it is not yet time?

 

When you look into 

the mirror and confess—

enough is enough!

 

Who will save you?
© Diana Raab

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