The soldier saw
reddish-orange blood pouring out
of his enemy’s chest
as he thrust his glossy sword
Reddish-orange, the color of the setting sun,
he thought, pointless.
For the first time, he looked into his
enemy’s face. Was he 17 or 18?
His hands numbed and bones quivered as he
imagined his youngest brother
soaked in reddish-orange blood.
Another enemy lay beside the young one,
like crushed leaves,
his dark crimson blood reminiscent
of the sky before a storm.
What is the color of my blood?
he wondered. What did he fight for?
Expansion? Race? Religion?
A vulture sat in the stench of blood,
her mouth purplish-red,
observing and waiting.
Suddenly, scared of all the red around him,
the soldier dragged himself out
of the battlefield.
His helmet and sword slipped away
in search of a better warrior.
His legs strolled where his heart led and
he stopped in front of a monastery.
He knelt with force
as the monastery bells rang,
his knees brushing
the hard rock below.
He found that his blood
like a scattered autumn leaf.
He lifted his eyes
as the sun broke through the trees
illuminating his path to peace.