untitled death, untitled war

by Lucy Thynne

‘A shadow is a man
when the mosquito death approaches.’

it is impossible to breathe
underwater
yet somehow
i grow gills drinking
all this rain;
it listens to
our thoughts,
unspoken,
our child under the
dinner table. we
glue our
fingers round triggers
with cold sticky
air
and dead birds
that cannot
even survive
here.
there are no scrabble word to describe this war.

wet
beetled
earth
closes over my tongue,
but i cannot swallow it down,
it must hide the body
beneath
raw gums. the short german
child, uniform
of chewed flesh, who
translated his fear
in moon mud rasps, the child who
i put lids over
blue pan eyes,
who hours later could
have
planted seeds
of stille nacht
in my
eardrums.
the prophet who said this would be over by christmas
has probably been shot.