Thursday 5 July 2007

The Ways of War

It was a wrong number that started it. Kicked off thunder storm as if signal had pierced cloud and brought forth lightning.

They were on the cutting edge of existence. Taking back their world until clap of thunder sent them scurrying like the frightened tribe they were. What had they been thinking?

For all that they followed a pre-mapped route, carved out by a hand now severed from arm. For all that their enigmatic leader hung its bloody remains like a lucky charm from his belt. They were as lost, both metaphorically and literally, as when first foot stepped forth from ravaged city. As unlikely a tribe to succeed in heroism as plastic surgery being able to reattach hand to arm.

Mobile thrown down to the raging seas below, as if its signal had not already penetrated sky.

They did not drive the foe from their world, it drove them. Vulnerable they stood with the White Cliffs below them, and with devastation behind. Such were the ways of war. There was no Independence Day here. No Will Smith, no Bruce Willis.

Enemy aircraft sighted. Gleaming as it broke through thunder cloud, zeppelin in shape, alien at heart. Fire, to scorch an earth already cremated, fell like hot rain to wash the skin from their bones.

Copyright Catherine J Gardner 2007

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