Warrior’s Soul

Waking to a dog barking,
   mother calling her name,
      sounds of air whizzing by.

Lost in a world of conflict,
   father gone to his grave,
      younger brother hiding in the crawlspace.

A pang pulls at her stomach,
   dry lips reach for the sky,
      tears as her mother looks her way.

Safety is nothing to a girl
   who is already starving,
      already ill from the war filled waters.

One day she'll leave her home,
   as she stands holding her father's rifle,
      a warrior's soul forced upon her.

~ Written in memory of my Red Cross service in Kosovo, 1999-2000

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