Boys Playing War
They came to fix the sewer pipe:
all kinds of machines,
working for days –
they dug a trench through the yard,
with giant mountains on either side.
No more shitty guns for us,
no more “bang, bang, you’re dead” –
now it is for real.
We crouch on separate sides of the front –
our pockets full of earth,
our hearts full of clay.
We throw clods and stones, throwing
clods and stones.
When it gets dark –
completely dark –
mother leans from the kitchen window,
looks around, drunk, not seeing,
and starts to howl like a pig:
– “Biiiitches, come hommeee, now!!!”
But what is home when the front is boiling over?
Clods and stones whistle by, clods
and stones whistling, sparks
fly out from our ears.
there is just my brother and I,
a bump on my forehead,
a tear in his eye,
the black kitchen window
waves its curtains at our return.
At midnight –
in the deepest center of the night –
mother suddenly rises, and tiptoes
into our room: we lie – so similar,
so similar, we are so similar
that you could barely tell
which one of us was more dead.
© translated by Rimas Uzgiris