I have removed my shirt and am kneeling in a pit
looking up at a man pointing a rifle down at me.
Quiet, everything is eerily quiet now, the morning’s
hissed commands and scrape of shovels long gone.
Why will he shoot me? He will shoot me because
he has learned he eats better if he does
what he is told. He has learned when he drives
to the assigned work site and sees along the way
twelve vultures competing to rip apart a deer corpse,
in the afternoon when he returns he will see there
is nothing left but a skull, ribcage, some hair,
the birds nowhere in sight. He has learned murder
calls out not because it wants to cause him any harm,
but to sing him a lullaby and rock him to sleep.
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