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We imagined strobing lights,
the hovering discs, the pods on stilts
that towered over houses, dwarfed the trees,
and roared and hissed.

And never thought of this
blitzkrieg, silent and invisible,
the armies of an empire born within
our world that fight like these,
make us divide ourselves, to rule
and take the frailest of our kin.

We pay this empire’s tax,
unwilling, but we know
there is no choice;
its yoke lies heavy on our backs.

To throw it off now we must choose
weapons we’re not trained to use;
- withdraw the children from the school,
close the social meeting place,
shut down the enterprise that thrives,
the only strategy that tells
to separate, leave sterile space,
embrace the narrowing of our lives.

But though to gain we first must lose
our freedoms, lock down, jail, ourselves
and hope’s imagination now
sees only through the darkened glass

this tide will turn; this too will pass,
will wax, then wane, as empires do,
and one day we shall learn again
the warm spontaneous touch,
free, unthinking, hug and play,
and build our world anew.

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