Insomnia Soldiers This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

January 12, 2010
On the verge of sleep
Drifting in some indecisive
Boundary line between
Dreamland and
The blood rushing in my ears
Is almost too much form me to take.

For the blood
Thudding incessantly,
Continually, mercilessly,
Is the rhythm of
Cartoon soldiers marching
On s narrow cobblestone street
In an ignored town in Italy.

There is a parade, always,
One with blood-red banners
And dark-haired women
Leaning out of their second-story windows
And dirty children trailing the
Their grimy fingers longingly
Fluttering over the cart of oranges
At the corner.

And as this imagined reason
For my insomnia
Becomes an awakening curiousity,
A reason my blood-shot eyes
Remain very much propped open,
And I wonder what families
These young men came from,
What childhood memories
Do they possess behind those
Glossy black boot tips,

The image cuts out black
My soldiers are gone
Disappearing due to some
Insignificant and wayward
Dream of smiling.

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