Winter Camp

One flew
few knew
things askew
behind the fence
in present tense.
All done
for martial welfare
mere prevention
germ retention
biological warfare.
Units numbered
secret saved
for old enemies
then depraved,
fallen logs
the Tenno
weapons friendly
also maim
yellow fiends
MacArthur named.
From Frederick
in Maryland’s happy glen
infectious warriors
borne by men,
among the free to escape
vulnerable lands to shape
A forest far too dense
they find
filled with logs
of younger kind.
For homely hearths
they are not fit
no warmth
protective near to sit.
Defense is warfare,
lies are truth.
In winter camp
some chickens wait
winged warriors
that cannot fly
to scourge all ages
if they won’t die.

Author’s Note: The term “log” here is borrowed from the translation of the term Japanese military used to designate the Chinese upon which they experimented mainly in Harbin during WWII. MacArthur notoriously exempted those responsible from war crimes trials in return for the documented results of that “research”.

Dr T.P. Wilkinson writes, teaches History and English, directs theatre and coaches cricket between the cradles of Heine and Saramago. He is also the author of Church Clothes, Land, Mission and the End of Apartheid in South Africa. Read other articles by T.P..