Exterminate the brutes!

Cutting Daisies in Vietnam

Up the river
swift they rowed
Airborne yesterday
daisies mowed
Far too many
for us to kill
To shoot them first,
they must stand still.

Pack them tightly,
give them masks.
They’ll die lightly
when we ask.
None will want
to miss the show.
None will want
to really know.

Where choking children’s
corpses root
Where smoking parents
hand and foot
beside their loving
children lay
Took they our shots
both night and day.

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..