I hug the earth whole days and nights,
Disguised the color of the ground,
And watch the army as it fights
So far away can’t hear a sound;
Although my scope can see the sights
And I’m all set to pump a round
Into the body of a man
They call Commander Taliban.
I’m doing what they trained me to:
To kill at distance with a shot
That turns an officer to goo,
Here in this land that time forgot.
But even Alexander’s crew
Got hogtied in a bloody knot
By Afghan tribes who sent them packing
After they suffered a shellacking.
But lying here I’ve done some thinking:
These men have never done to me
What my own country has. The stinking
Bankers who took my home. Marie
Who left because of my hard drinking
(It’s true our marriage was at sea)
Before I got back from my tour
And had the time to take the cure.
So when on leave I put my skills,
To make a shot from miles away,
To use by making banker kills.
I stalked them as if they were prey
As I was on my mortgage bills.
But never mind. It’s all OK.
I took out banker CEOs
Then their replacement cameos.
As I recall the first I drilled
Was in his office late at night.
I shot him through the head and spilled
His brains before he felt his plight.
Can’t tell you though how I was thrilled
Just knowing I’d wiped out that blight.
A janitor came through the door
Found him, looked out, and mouthed “do more.”
The same black guy found the replacement
And laughed until he started crying.
He seemed to know my gun’s emplacement
Gave me a thumbs up at his dying.
Then signaled me “come to the basement
We’ll have a drink.” Then signifying…
But then some other guys rushed in
And I thought no and “pulled the pin.”
The army in Afghanistan
Says it won’t kill a noncombatant
But always do it when we can.
It is as though we have a patent,
Call it the American Plan,
Where we’ll kill any bad hat and aunt,
His mother, wife, and kids by scores
So we won’t leave their hatred’s spores.
And so I stalked their country clubs
Where I could see these finance studs
When they took out the wife and cubs
And half a dozen of their buds
And turned them into body stubs.
A high-power round turns you to spuds
And then, before there’s time to shout,
I’d taken his whole table out.
At fifty thousand feet per second,
The head won’t stop this kind of round.
And didn’t now. The killing beckoned.
I’d put them all deep in the ground;
And anyone who stopped and reckoned
The body count would join the mound.
But no one ever stayed for long,
Though some got trampled in the throng.
I’d read the papers every morning
And got a laugh at what I read:
“A sniper striking without warning.”
“He’ll put a bullet through your head.”
“There’s no one left do the mourning
Because the family, too, is dead.”
Just doing what they trained me to:
To turn my enemy to goo.
They interviewed the lowly masses.
“The bankers should have gone to jail.
If government gives them free passes,
It’s good that someone’s on their trail.”
No sympathy for these fat asses,
Except at Harvard, Princeton, Yale.
I brought the Left and Right together:
They marched as one, birds of a feather.
The rappers called me Master Sniper
And vied with albums in my praise.
The FBI called me a viper
They’d hunt until the end of days.
I went on killing one pin-striper
After another. Whole arrays
Of people called me Robin Hood
And said that I was doing good.
Now just as leave was set to end
The army sent the CID,
On which they thought they could depend,
Out on my trail to capture me.
They thought that I’d gone round the bend
So orders went out from D.C.
To reel me in and bring me back
To see if I was clearly whack.
It seems they’d gotten on my trail
When I’d wiped out a panic room
Of bankers who thought that I’d fail
Because I couldn’t see their womb
Where they sat plotting our betrayal.
But my sights pierced their vaulted gloom.
The army knew that I was one
Who used the “penetrator” gun.
And so they set a phony meeting
In their attempt to capture me.
It was my last chance at succeeding
Before I’d be a ghost and free.
They brought in counter-snipers, needing
To fix the points they could foresee
From which I’d take my deadly shot
And waited, Johnny-on–the-spot.
They did it all without police
And didn’t bring the FBI;
But left a body to increase
The chances that they’d certify
The killings now would finally cease.
They’d phonied up an alibi
That covered all my time on leave.
They’re really good at make believe.
They flew me to interrogation,
Examined me for days on end.
To see if I, as their creation,
Had simply gone around the bend.
And if I had, my cancellation…
Well, they’d be bound to recommend
It. Almost did. Great snipers are
In short supply. So no cigar.
So here I am. Afghanistan
Spread out below me where I lay
And muse at what will be their plan
If I don’t kill someone today,
As I watch out for Taliban.
They’ll put a “hitter” into play.
The mountains are behind me so…
I might go that way, if I go.