I was at a table writing in a second floor Hawaii condo when I heard a peck-peck-pecking sound. A small red-crested bird had flown in, gone up to a floor-length mirror, and was jumping up and down, furiously attacking his own image. Afraid he would hurt himself, I moved to approach him and he flew out to the balcony, perched on a railing, looking back at me as if to say, Why did you interrupt me? Later I thought of this incident as a metaphor for what we do in wars: we’re really fighting what we don’t like in ourselves.
John Laue, a former teacher, editor of Transfer and Associate Editor of San Francisco Reviewhas five published poetry books to his credit plus one of prose, The Columns of Joel Mobius, a guide for psychiatrically diagnosed people. He presently coordinates the reading series of The Monterey Bay Poetry Consortium and edits the online magazine Monterey Poetry Review.