In the Yard by the Sniper Nest


photo from Pexels by artist Pascal Küffer

a poem by Joshua Brown

Red roses bloom fragrance

In the yard outside spread

A quiet reprieve from the sea

Among the living, seek dead

For quietness is but empty

And to be clean but lowly

I hug her kind but stabbing

For she is me and not free

Soldiers march uniformed

Stately with violent minds

To kill by propaganda cold

The children that he finds

Am I a child or am I a man?

Did the code by gods eat

My own reality in humanity?

Did the yard entrap my feet?

For if I fell into the verit 

Snare of violent battle

And lost my soul to Him

The Own Who Owns the Cattle,

And we escape not yet

Among the rubble of pay

The monetary gain lost

Of the aust'r lord so gay,

Then lost are they behind

And lost am I to Hell's gate

A childless soul in body

A wilted rose-like fate.

#poem #poetry #privilege #contemporary #culture #society #state #identity #power #punishment #sin #war #defense #race #military #community #religion 


Thanks for reading "In the Yard By the Sniper Nest." I wrote this on the Denver metro RTD A line on November 12, 2022. Really it's a reflection of my own grandmother's peaceful yard and its relationship to war. Recently I was reading the King James Bible book of Ezekiel and contemplating our responsibility and membership to group identities, like "being an American" or "being a Christian" etc. We are neither independent of nor slaves to our identity, but we should probably consider how being a part of a group enriches or incriminates us, not based on that identity, but based on our own actions when we act within that group. Anyways, that's what I was contemplating both on a family and societal scale, but maybe you got something else out of this poem!

If you want, you can also check out my last poem, "To Be Happy." It is just a contemplation on a state of nature, from the passing of the seasons to the embrace of deep and meaningful human relations. I think it turned out beautiful.

I would really appreciate comments. Did you experience any emotions from reading or did you find it a bit boring? Let me know down below or on Telegram or Facebook! Thanks. 


The easiest way to reach me is digitally, somewhere among all the social media platforms:

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If you want to interface with me in the old-fashioned physical realm, I live about 10 miles up Sand Creek from its mouth into the Platte River, which is east of Mount Evans. Also, you can mail me at:

PO Box 172441
Denver, CO 80217