Triad Magazine

A Hillsborough Community College Student Publication since 1978.

Metamorphosis of Innocence

By Kathryn Lipsch

Secure, serene,

On a mother’s lap,

The baby sleeps.

Short years in the future,

the little eyes see more

than familiar sweet faces.

The body grows.

Oblique gang violence

bends a young mind

that swells and blisters as

his soul searches for reason.

He rebels against loss

of sweeter, unfettered times.

Years go by.

Now as young man,

he stands tall,

his tattooed fist

raised to the sky.

In camouflage gear,

he defends a cause,

trying to stay alive.

His jeep slowly rolls

on a lonely night-patrol

in a far away village.

Faint, quick movements

of a dark shadow

on a rooftop-a sniper with a gun.

The trooper raises his M-16.

A strange face forms

in his cross-hairs.

Fear pulls the trigger.

A limp form falls.

Blood splatters the ground.

Adrenalin quickly rushes

to justify, to conceal

the horror burrowing deep.

A single shot squeezed out

ends his would-be assassin.

The scene, etched in his mind,

sweeps away a last solid speck

of a now forgotten decency.

In years to come,

ugly scars will mar his understanding

as his mind tries to remember

the credence given by a society

to elect his political insanity.

But in his heart he will know,

it was to justify– simplify to justify.

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