The Rage of George
Rattling of Sabres
The Gods of War
In the Clouds
The Tyrant Flees
Out of Order
Doing the Patriot Act
The Little Prince
Ichor of the Gods
The Price of Peace
Dead or Alive
Across the Border
Summer in the City
Wolf and Jackal
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and The Idyossey?
Baghdad mornings are cool before the mid-day heat
As autumn slips into late September.
American troops are under constant attack,
More men killed after than during active war,
Iraq is in shambles, population demoralized,
While Saddam, Breaker of Men, remains at large.
Prince George admits to war’s real cost,
Eighty-seven billion is requested from Congress.
The extent of his folly, his headstrong policy,
Hits home; like boots in thick mud,
Held in a sticky sludge that exhausts effort,
The U.S. is trapped in an Iraqi quagmire.
The chorus of dissent quickens, public
Opinion turns against the costly venture.
The Democratic candidates sing
Of his folly daily; George’s popularity falls.
General Clark joins the field of contenders,
A decorated soldier vs. George’s top gun fluff.
At the U.N., U.S. allies foment opposition,
France, Germany and Russia pull together,
Hold the U.S. hostage to an altered policy.
At the U.N.,
George behaves in cowboy fashion,
Asks for help, but on his own terms only.
Meanwhile, Al Qaeda retrenches and recruits.
A video production of Bin Laden is released.
Like a home movie of a family vacation
He calmly strolls among Afghan flowers
On a hillside, walking stick in hand,
At home among the jagged rocks and scrub.
The bearded Islamic avenger is alive.
Momentum lost by George et al.,
A juggernaut becomes a holding action.
Though many Baathists are arrested,
Weapons of mass destruction are never found.
It's rumored Saddam is still at large;
Citizens of Fallujah proudly parade his photo.
Saddam himself, much thinner,
His mustache gone, hair cropped,
Surgery having altered his appearance,
Returns home to Iraq disguised. He calls
Himself Abu Al Sabat, a merchant,
Travels north of Baghdad undisturbed.
Despite his safety in North Korea,
Saddam could not resist the journey home.
With both sons dead he’s too much alone and
Hungry for the blistering heat,
To him the sweet caress of desert life.
He returns like a pigeon to his old roost.
Sipping tea late morning at a café,
He begins discussion with two other men.
They are intrigued by his air of authority and
As he rails against the west,
His companions get worked up and
The discussion becomes heated.
“Bush is a criminal,” says Stealthy Saddam,
“The world court will say so, he’ll be condemned.”
“He’s no worse than Saddam,” says Ibn Hassan,
He raises up his glass to make a toast.
“I’m glad Saddam is gone, I hope he’s dead!”
The other man holds up his glass. They drink.
Saddam, breaker of countless men
Like these, small men with big ideas,
Grins and begins to chuckle. In moments
He’s hysterical, tears down his cheeks,
While the men, confused and wary, are
Unsure why this stranger laughs.
Saddam stands, pulls out a roll of dollar bills.
Still chortling, he throws one down,
Claps the back of Ibn Hassan and says,
“Saddam dead, I don’t think so!”
At that he turns and walks away
Down an ancient alley.
The men, Ibn Hassan and Salim Barhabi,
Have noticed Saddam’s fat roll of dollars.
Without a word, they rise together,
And follow Saddam to the south.
Saddam is distracted by chirping birds,
As men with sharp knives stick to his heels.
His pace unhurried, Saddam strolls.
For the first time in many years he’s free,
No attendants, no crowds, he
Has time and money, can relax and enjoy life.
He plans to take a restful nap.
As the alley forks he turns to the left.
Behind him, quickening, the two men split,
One turning right, the other left.
They know their home town well, its
Passages, short cuts and tunnels,
And that they will meet head on.
Lulled by the laughter of children,
Completely unaware he is in danger
Saddam walks straight into the ambush.
As he turns a corner, Salim Barhabi
Scarf pulled over his face confronts him,
Behind Saddam Ibn Hassan draws his blade.
“Out of my way,” barks Saddam, as if
Backed by the fighters Fedayeen.
Used to power, he forgets his new persona.
Barhabi blocks his path. Ibn Hassan
Places the knife’s point at Saddam’s back,
While Barhabi searches him.
“I recognize you!” Saddam laughs,
“At the café, you hoped Saddam was dead…
You want money?” Saddam dips into his pocket,
And Ibn Hassan, fearing a weapon
Thrusts his knife in Saddam’s kidney.
Arterial blood follows the withdrawn blade.
“What!” yells Saddam, “What are you doing?”
He falls against the wall. “Taking your money,
You Baathist pig,” sneers Barhabi, “And
“Your life as well,” adds Ibn Hassan.
Saddam slumps to the sandy sidewalk,
His cash is taken, the two men run off.
As his life drains out, he feels
Hot air upon his face like desert breeze,
Turns and sees a black dog staring. Hussein
Smiles and the dog licks his face. “I am
Loved after all,” he sighs, as Death
Welcomes Saddam, Breaker of Men.