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The warning disguised as a message
came before the village was up and about,
and when they left
they didn’t carry pots or blankets
or even machetes.
As they went to the outpost of guardians
they left chickens running in the yard
and the dog lazing on the steps.

Flights like theirs
Do not have destinations,
And only once did they wish for wings.

The taste of the herd will return them
To dark and dingy towns where
They will sell used clothes, wild meat and herbs.
The most vulnerable will sell bodies.
Because in spite of the land mines
They still shared limbs.

Words like “the end of history”
Will not resonate anywhere in their lives.
They do not have meat and drinks left
To offer to embedded scribes. As before
Their fates will go unreported, arousing
Only a shred of curiosity somewhere.