I am always saddened when a child gets caught up in the bad things that come from men and women playing power games. The apparent torture and mutilation of 13 year-old Hamza al-Khatib in Syria triggered this piece, a meditation on the ways we damage our humanity in the pursuit of ‘us and them’ games.

It’s like taking a gun
and pointing it
in your brother’s face
Telling them
unless they stop
you will pull the trigger
Wasting life
to make you feel better
To make you feel like
you are getting
somewhere
You become
those them
becoming you
Face down on the ground
for the sake of scant borders
Pointless
Pointless
Pointless
Like taking a gun
and pointing it
in your brother’s face