Anyone Who Steps in the Way

Paul’s not a veteran of Vietnam
but he goes there in his dreams
to watch his brother Tim

walk in hazy streams sprayed
with Agent Orange before he
came home to Indiana

farmed the land for 30 years
grew weaker all the time
saw a doctor in town who had

no idea what was wrong
but a specialist in the city
understood Tim’s problem

said it was too late, couldn’t
help him, so Tim wasted away
from a product proudly

made in the U.S.A.
by Monsanto, one that still
harvests people today.

Agent Orange has never
played favorites, takes anyone
who steps in the way.

Nominated for Best of the Net and Pushcart prizes, Donal Mahoney has had poetry and fiction appear in various publications in North America, Europe, Asia and Africa. Some of his work can be found here. Donal can be reached at Read other articles by Donal.