2 July, 0125    
Young vivacious voices sang in the next room    
A church choir rejoiced on TV     
Their singing echoed in my head as if it were hollow    
But I laid there     
He was done with me    
Shredded my loins     
tethered in this web bloodied and swollen    
Face down     
Jeans pulled to my waist on his kitchen table     
The hungry pants and gasps for air were    
No longer mine     
No longer his    
It was that damn pudgy-faced nasty slobbering mastiff of his,    
He’d witnessed it all    
And he looked like he had seen it before     
Yet he cocked his head as if searching for     
the answer to some interstellar riddle    
He was still drinking that gin     
As he zipped up his pants     
He raised his glass as if toasting to my health    
Walked around the table    
Surveying my whimpering carcass     
He stepped aside to let me go    
He would not impede me    
Be steady     
But be swift     
I can’t let him do this to me again     
Did it happen at all?    
He was bigger than me    
I did fight, right?    
No it didn’t happen    
Then why was I bleeding    
“Then he will say to those on his left,     
‘Depart from me, you cursed,     
into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.    
Matthew 25:41     
Television still on as I crossed his yard    
31 July, 0830  
“You want to report what?” my commander demanded of me     
“You’re talking about your squadron leader.”    
“Decorated five times in three tours in the sand.”    
“A husband and father of three.”    
 ‘Yes sir’ stumbled over my lips each time    
“I’m not gonna sugarcoat this for you,     
because you know his story will vary.     
What this will do to him, and do    
to you will be a quite scary.”    
“Yes sir”    
This pangolin faced troll’s only concern was    
the clerical nightmare it would bring     
He wanted to dismiss it as some petty matter    
That I needed to reform my way of thinking     
Hoping this fad would pass like I was some teenaged girl     
21 August, 1435  
At my court martial     
I could still hear that chorus singing    
A brutal homicidal act was what the judge had said    
Then my life sentence was summarily read    
As the two MPs started to lead me away     
My commander only had one thing to say,     
“Robert, did you have to shoot the dog too?”     
“Yes sir.”    



C. Z. Heyward is an emerging poet, playwright, and social critic whose work has appeared in a number of journals including: The Gay and Lesbian Review Worldwide, Smoky Blue Literary and Arts Magazine, and The Sacred Cow. His work has found platforms in the United Kingdom, France and Greece. When he’s not writing, he enjoys live jazz in dark bars and riding his vintage motorcycles. He is also pursuing his PhD in educational leadership at St. John’s University (New York).