All armies seem the same—
They strut with the chins of dullards
In a sentimental vise of duty,
A synchronous mating of unripened men
While the elders watch, saluting—
In China, in North Korea, all over the planet
The dead seriousness of patriotic
Stupification, the vulgar sentiment
To protect family, Country, and some God.
All armies seem the same—the elders
Salute, are proud, know that the ranks
Emptied of anonymous cadavers
Will again be filled by the raw youth
Who vibrate in their chains with images
Of heroism, never imagining the
Of bloody limbs before them.
These are the gifts of mothers and family
A gift returned with metal or casket—
These are the ceremonial rites
Which make the deepest evil into virtue.
All armies seem the same to me,
They beat to a metronome of a false blessing,
They march to a symphony of
All armies seem the same to me:
The elders salute, promise is impaled.