An edited version of the previously published poem of the same name.
Let’s right (I know it’s write)
A nursery rhyme for child soldiers in Africa.
Our Great(er) plague ensues, does it not?
Take that, western “Black Death”!
Ring-a-ring o’ oil rigs?
A pocket full of diamonds?
A gold mine?
It doesn’t matter –
We all fall down!
“Don’t call me a fallen soldier -
This war’s not mine to fight”.
We’ve forgotten about our soldiers.
Wait. Let me rephrase that;
We’ve forgotten about out children.
They cannot play, because
The vibrant colour of red finger paint looks like the blood shed on their hands.
The sand pit suffocates them as a makeshift graveyard would.
Playgrounds have come to look like training camps.
They duck when water balloons are thrown, because they know all too well the aftermath of hand grenades.
Hide-and-seek sparks anxiety -
“What will happen to me if I’m found?”
We should not forget our children,
Lest they learn
To kill us while we sleep.