Ring of Steel

The taste of metal
slowly touched her tongue
as she pushed the stainless
steel needle into her

Held tight, her grimace
was like closed borders;
the boarders who held her
child back; huge gunships, tiny

She tightened her jaw
and pushed again. It
wasn’t the pain (though that
was excruciating),

the memory that
hurt the most. Cold metal
of a truck’s bed. Thread that
tugged her flesh – a long-lost

Pulled taught now, the blood
made her cough, tearing
her lips a little more.
She narrowed her eyes to

the salt spray. Crowded
in like they were, there
was no turning back, they
could only move forward

“Fuck off! We’re full!” screamed
the welcome party
as she stepped tenderly
out into the street. She

a car backfired; a
gunshot outside her
window. Silence as glass
tinkled to the floor. They

in the door, grabbed her,
took what they wanted,
and left. She sobbed through a
weak smile, comforting her

She awoke to forced
food. “Border Force” wants
clean records at all costs.
They remind her of her

Three years “detention”.
Punished for seeking
help. Three years lost for good.
They did it for her own

A “Ring of Steel” – our
sovereign borders safe –
finally – from those  bad
people: men, women, children.

Swamped by Them. Taken
hostage by Them. A
steel band around our throats,
slowly tighter until

choke, laughing, on our
own pride. Proud of our
hatred. Proud of our flag.
Proud of the bodies that

Slowly back to the surface
of the

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