by Gary Hardaway

The first and fiercest impulse
is “annihilate them all”
like mosquitoes bearing malaria
or Dengue fever. They,
of course, might welcome martyrdom—

they nurture a medieval language
for the world inside themselves.
It spills out like pathogens from
the puncturing, proboscis-like,

automatic rifles. Like Alexander,
we would slash the knot
and let the pieces fall as they fall.

The end will film itself
in charred, eviscerated bodies

licked by stinging flies.