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Wednesday, 11 September 2013

Keeping One's Nerve

You ask me how I knew
that you had WMDs.
I reply with ease:
I sold them to you.
The nerve gas that you hide
cannot be denied
but you swear blind
that it isn’t true
that the deadly release
was done by you.
We say we will find
the evidence we need
but we have to concede
we haven’t any proof
and certain objectors
are hitting the roof
at the thought we might
intervene in the fight.
All combatants think
that they are in the right
but they must realize
that gas gets in your eyes
(and the body and the lung)
like the smoke in the song
that’s often been sung.

© Luigi Pagano 2013

Luigi Pagano is a contributor to Poetry 24 and other websites. Two of his poems will be included in the Anthology ‘Voices from the Web’ - 2014 - shortly to be published by UKA Press.


  1. Second reading, Luigi and it just gets better - especially now I've realised to sing it! And of course your poem hits the nail on the head (to use a cliche, even though poets shouldn't) - everyone always thinks that they are right in a war.

    1. Cheers Carolyn. I wondered whether anybody would realise that that tune was the inspiration for the poem. It kept going round in my head as I wrote the verses.
      Thanks for reading and commenting.