Collateral Damage

from by Orion the Hunter

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He wants to die where his heart cannot see him
Where everyone cries, but his friends all believe
That his sacrifice will keep the world spinning on
I ask “where’s the line between hero and savage?”
He can’t meet my eyes when he answers “collateral damage”

And I can remember his face in the dark of his past
His eyes were masked by the darkest part
I grasped at his shoulders but he did not feel my hands

He veils me with worry to hide his obsession
And sometimes I like it, sometimes I can’t stand him
I ask him how long he has shouldered the weight of his heart

And I can remember his laugh when he’s out of control
I’ll kiss him again until he can feel clean emotion
I’ll ask him tomorrow if blood makes him a better man

I cannot tell which way leads to easier rage
I will not sing softly the song of broken age
And the birds, oh, my brothers, can wail til their wings burst to bone
Until I can’t fly, I will spend all my sky alone

And he will bite his tongue and spend the evening on the ground
But I can’t stay still like that, rotting and gaining more baggage
I ask “what’s the cost of my love?”
He says “collateral damage”

He bleeds me with scorn when my love can’t deceive him
And all of my feelings can’t hide from his reason
I live like a parasite, latched to his smile and his bones

And I laugh like a lover, though he will not touch my hand
The sharpest of smiles fill my head with impossible notions

I am stuck on his trail, I will shadow a specter of him
He must know I’m straggling behind him, a phantom limb
But I will not run from my fear, though he has the advantage
When I ask what I am to him, he says “collateral damage”
When I ask what I am to him, he says “collateral damage”


from Out of the Dead Land, released May 15, 2016



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Orion the Hunter San Francisco, California

Nathaniel Orion. Just a small, tired poet learning how to play guitar and pet dogs at the same time. Donations go toward keeping me in socks and comic books.

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