​Hiding in tall grass
out on the hungry plains
scars mistaken for stripes,
romanticized and demonized
these camouflaged mythical beasts.
Roaring instills fear in the heart,
but dangerous, the scared,
the pained.
Hunted become the hunters
ignorant of the rules
in your life or death games.
Melting into shadows
disappearing into anonymity,
the trembling heart races
even as the breathing slows
the mind drifts to solemnity.
Contemplating purpose
wondering if it is superfluous
to speak of one’s basic needs,
of self-respect and dignity
when the jackals and carrion
pick at your carcass
though the heart still beats,
the blood is warm and
the flesh is sweet.
Loud talking, clumsy stalking
peddling peace while hawking
weapons and self-destructive wares.
No matter what the truth of it is
just label them insurgents
and the mythical beasts
become something about whom
no one understands, believes in,
or no longer cares.
M. Zane McClellan
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