Man o’ war

I am preparing to go to war against a child.

We will be on the same battlefield, but where I see the corpses of broken promises, the walking wounded hopes, the blood shed in ignorance and fear and spite, she will see only naughty teddy bears, plastic soldiers, perhaps a tea set.

I will be raising arms against injustice, greed and vanity; a desperate man’s last stand against a plague of hypocrisy. No-one wins a war like this. She will be raising a bubble blower, creating any number of self-contained little worlds that belong to her, alone. Should they burst, they are easily replaced.

I will weep, for all those lost to this conflict over the years. Untarnished by the carnage, the princess shall daintily dance across the backs of the broken. I would feel like a war criminal, piercing that innocence, if it was not artificial.

We are not toys, my compatriots and I. We have cried, bled, fallen. We have known endless horror, unthinking cruelty, shameless profiteering on the misery of others. Those of us who have not succumbed are hollow wrecks, angry parodies, monsters.

She sees only playthings; if Mr Bear is upset, it is because she wishes it, otherwise it is simply not true. If a plastic man has fallen, he need only be stood on his feet again, ready to twirl her across another dancefloor, whispering sweet nothings into her ear. And if someone is crying … Best to look away, dive deeper into the private game, find another who is smiling an empty smile.

But when all is said and done, I and those like me shall be returned to the toybox. Plastic soldiers do not bleed; teddy bears do not frown. Such silly war games are for boys. Nice girls play House and Marriage and other silly, light-hearted games, where the sun always shines, and everyone is always happy.

Huddled in my trench, waiting for the final conflict, I think (not for the first time) of turning my weapon upon myself. Surely it would be easier than attacking this grown woman squeezed into a tiny sundress, pretending at an endless childhood. But there is no honour in this thought; it would be a cessation of my pains, but the war would roll on without me.

Sighing, I settle into position, line my sights … and wait.



~ by thedyingmoments on November 19, 2012.

One Response to “Man o’ war”

  1. wow.

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