War Letters (edited)

  (Image origin unknown)

June 17th

Dearest – Anastasia,

I wonder if the military reads letters

Before they let them through?

I’ve always wondered that

Out here

You wouldn’t want a bad letter

But what would constitute a ‘bad’
Letter?

Damned if I know….

When you’re young and just going in

You are told everything to expect and what to do

But out here….

You’re on your own

The guys

They talk a lot about their girls

About what they’re gonna do

When we get home

About fucking

Taking prostitutes in foreign cities

All the shit

But when it all comes down to the line

What you want…

Is that last night

You want it back

Where I had you for a couple of hours

And we waited for morning

Close

That’s what we want

And we want all of this to be over

And we’re afraid of

What this will make us

What we’re becoming

What if I can’t be that close again?

And that line isn’t the heated battle

You’re a machine in that moment

The line

Is the nightmare of midnight in hell

Black as pitch

No sound

No sight

The air still as a plate

And you have no idea what the other guy is doing ….

All you have is a pulse

And a memory

There was one private younger than me,average like any of us.

Always waiting for a moment to write
his fiancé.

Yesterday he got a letter from home

Her home was hit by a storm…

There were no survivors.

I have no idea what came over him,

He just started walking

Straight to the line

Gunfire all around him.

Like pop rocks.

We jumped him and held him down -screaming-

His eyes were dead but he kept clawing at his face.

Every ounce of purpose was gone from that man.

We sent him back to psych…

I don’t know

I think we should probably not let letters through like that

I think,
If we do,

Please don’t let me know about it

I was just wondering ….

Oh,

It’s midnight

I can’t say much of anything else

But I hope you are ok

Thanks for writing…

I’ll send this through

If I don’t get another chance to write .

Yours. Always 

Charlie.


 Aug 12th 

Anastasia,

I don’t have but a few minutes..to get a line in..

But
 

I’m standing here on the deck

Somewhere off the coast of the Philippines …

I can see every star.

But you’re my north

Were I able,

I’d reach out 

Just to pick the one that you’re looking at and ask it to shine a little brighter and let you know …

I’m here,

I’m still here

Writing you.

I’m here.

I saw a comet.Pulsating and bright and then it dropped. 

Like your neckline …

I remember you,I remember your lips …pulling mine…

I remember your accent gentle like the water…

your hair like lavender.

You biting my shoulder and laughing ‘Sex on heels ‘

That’s what I called you…

I would that I could

Follow that comet to the edge of the Galaxy

Spelling sensual words

Along your waist…

Burning,layer by layer..

Down your inner thighs…

jusqu’à ce que je découvre chaque langue que vous chantez dans

(until I discover each language you sing in)

This is what the water has made me…

And I miss you…

Love,Charlie



Aug 15th 

Dearest –A

I read your letters

Don’t worry

It takes so long to get them out here

It’s a different feeling being this far out…almost difficult to believe that we are even at war…

But it is what it is…

I was thinking about

What you said about

J the other night

The world isn’t going to be this way

Not Forever,A.

He’s innocent

And vulnerable

But it’s more than that

Like you said …

It’s a perspective of the world

And people

How you look at things

And interact with them

I don’t want him

To think he has to change because

Of someone picking him apart
I don’t want him to

Dismiss things

As “bad things just happen sometimes”

I want him to know

That his interaction and reaction mean something.

Especially his art.

It can go

Where a single person can’t.

Where we can’t

It’s an expression that is important

The world won’t be this way forever

Maybe there will be a day

Or a year

When we stop writing

When we stop painting

When we stop feeling

When we watch our brothers

Live in misery

Or die on their feet

And we will not be moved

But it’s not this day

Or this year

And that’s why I’m here

And

As long as

We look after our children

Like J,

Tomorrow won’t be that day either.

I’ll write soon

love, Charlie


Sept 3rd 

My,A.

Do you remember

Staying in the flat, for three days,eating pepperoni and drinking red wine?

I had said this must be what a king feels like

And you laughed asking why?

And I told you about grits

And biscuits

We passed through a small town very much the same ….

The streets were empty

And the windows boarded

I couldn’t help but think about it…

It brought me a kind of surreal
 Peace.

I can’t do much else

Other than wish you

A happy birthday

I hope this reaches you soon.

Love, Charlie

P.s

 keep writing

I’m getting your letters

Every word

In time…



October 17th 

la couleur de rien

Is there a color for nothing?

for this feeling?

you rearranged me

And
I’m afraid we’ll never be together

I poured my grief

Into the violin and the piano …

I looked for you in the Keys

I looked for you in the bedroom,

I looked for you in the gentle

Shadows of others dancing

but I could not find you

The shadow

In my heart

Write to me,Your love.

-Anastasia

Nov 1st

Anastasia,Sometimes

I separate from myself

See the fields filled with ash

See the hearts filled with stone

And

I see us moving

Inside the light

And shadows

Emptying chambers

In our guns

In silence

Picking out

The fragments

After bombing a city

We can’t choose,Anastasia

We can’t choose what revelation

Comes our way

But I saw

The words

I hear the hymn

In the back of my mind

And I hope that after

Ten thousand years

We will be there

We will make it right

I hope that I come together

Whole

I hope that

We won’t drag each other

Out in the streets

I hope that we won’t

See what evil one man

Can put on another man

I hope …

That we come back

And then

We somehow

Remember how to live.

How to love you

Again

Sometimes

I feel as though

We only know how to…

How to destroy humanity

I know we should be keeping it safe

But it’s like this

One city

We stayed in

They’d had all their medical workers

Removed

After a blackout

These were sent to the military…

Just before we got there

One of ours slept with a woman during post …

He really just raped her

I have no better context,
I’m sorry

He was apparently drunk

But beside the point

Having no Doctors

No medical personnel

Within hundreds of miles

On the day we were leaving

She came out watching us

Pulled a revolver

And shot the Soldier

In the face …

This is what war does to us

Collapsing in the streets

Our hopes

Of a better tomorrow

They’re fleeting

And vague .

And I am so tired.

I am so tired.

I wish I had better
 News.

I wish I had better
 Letters.

I wish there were words

For this

That left us…

Closer together.

So just say my name

Write about the taste of food

Tell me about color

Because all I see

Is gray

All I see is black

And I can’t lift it.
Anastasia,

Love,Charlie.



November 26  
I understand your darkness,Charlie 

It’s quite alright

The world is

Coming apart

The governments are

Blacklisting families

Anyone who helps these families

Are black listed

And refused any help as well

On top of this

Marriages like ours

Are taking forever

To file for immigration

Because it’s us

With the Americans

They won’t outright defy America

But they will

Take their time

Some women have been waiting

For years …

We fear we will never leave this place ….

I feel like this most

At night

I feel this gray

But for color…Charlie

I saw a girl yesterday

She made me think of you

She was cleaning the kitchen

And couldn’t get a spot to come out

Her mother shook her head

Saying
“Use some elbow grease!”

I came back in from reading

And laughed

She was looking hysterically

Through the kitchen

And asked
“I can’t find the elbow grease

Where do we keep it?”

Think of me Charlie

Think of me

Next to you

in the morning

In our flat

Tangled together

Limb for limb

Drunk

With wine

It’s almost Christmas

I can’t help but romanticize the snow

I can’t help but write you

Letter for letter

You will come back to me

Whole,Charlie

There will always be shadows

But

I will love you, even in blindness

And if your hands have scarred

I will remind them

Of their maps

On my skin

Of how to touch me.

I will mend you.

Love,Anastasia

journal entry

It’s cold outside

We suffer quietly inside

Glass homes

Their eyes are watching …

We haven’t

Slept in years

We suffer paper skin

And scars

Casualties of war

They occupied

Our city

Just long enough

To take us outside

Lining the street

And shoot the men

And leave us to weep

I watched the snow turn

A crimson red

I watched my breath turn to ice
I watched my brother

Die ….inside my arms

Who killed us

In this war?

The alternatives

Are hesitation marks

From me and you

Everything in time…

What else is there

-Anastasia


journal entry 

I walk the city

I once knew

It fades

All around me

Unclear

The people

Moving

The graves outside

I am hollowed

But I am looking

With anxious eyes

I can’t remember anything

Very clear

What is different ?

What’s the same ?

And then

At the end of the street

I see her

In the garden

Digging

Flowers in her hair

She brushes her

Stubborn strands out of

Her eyes

And my heart

It’s beating

And
I’m not as callous

As I feared

It’s not as dark as I believed

And

She is standing

Crying

Over there

Right there

And I am running now…

I am

Forgetting to breathe

Afraid that I will wake up

Before I touch her

I feel the earth

I see the people fading

I see her right there

I see her

I reach out

Her arms

Her lips

Her eyes

The salt of

Her tears

Her finger tips

This is real.

We are here.

– Charlie

Lettres de guerre #end

IMG_4944.JPG
Origin (unknown)

journal entry

I walk the city
I once knew
It fades
All around me
Unclear
The people
Moving
The graves outside
I am hollowed
But I am looking
With anxious eyes
I can’t remember anything
Very clear
What is different ?
What’s the same ?
And then
At the end of the street

I see her
In the garden
Digging
Flowers in her hair
She brushes her
Stubborn strands out of
Her eyes
And my heart
Is beating
And
I’m not as callous
As I feared
It’s not as dark as I believed
And
She is standing
Crying
Over there
Right there
And I am running now…
I am
Forgetting to breathe
Afraid that I will wake up
Before I touch her
I feel the earth
I see the people fading
I see her right there
I see her
I reach out
Her arms
Her lips
Her eyes
The salt of
Her tears
Her finger tips
This is real.
We are here.

end

lettres de guerre #10

IMG_4986.JPGOrigin unknown

journal entry

It’s cold outside
We suffer quietly inside
Glass homes
Their eyes are watching …
We haven’t Slept in years
We suffer paper skin
And scars
Casualties of war
They occupied
Our city
Just long enough
To take us outside
Lining the street
And shoot the men
And leave us to weep

I watched the snow turn
A crimson red
I watched my breath turn to ice
I watched my brother
Die ….inside my arms
Who killed us
In this war?
The alternatives
Are hesitation marks
From me and you

Everything in time…
What else is there
-Anastasia

lettres de guerre #9

IMG_4855.JPG
(Origin:Robert Frank)

I understand your darkness
Charlie
It’s quite alright
The world is
Coming apart
The governments are
Black listing families
Anyone who helps these families
Are black listed
And refused any help as well
On top of this
Marriages like ours
Are taking forever
To file for immigration
Because it’s us
With the Americans
They won’t out right defy america
But they will
Take their time
Some women have been waiting
For years …
We fear we will never leave this place ….
I feel like this most
At night
I feel this gray
But for color
Charlie

I saw a girl yesterday
She made me think of you
She was cleaning the kitchen
And couldn’t get a spot to come clean
Her mother shook her head
Saying
“Use some elbow grease!”
I came back in from reading
And laughed
She was looking hysterical
Through the kitchen
And asked
“I can’t find the elbow grease
Where do we keep it?”

Think of me Charlie
Think of me
Next to you
in the morning
In our flat
Tangled together
Limb for limb
Drunk
With wine

It’s almost Christmas
I can’t help but romanticize the snow
I can’t help but write you
Letter for letter
You will come back to me
Whole,Charlie
There will always be shadows
But
I will love you even in blindness
And if your hands have scarred
I will remind them
Of their maps
On my skin
Of how to touch me.
I will mend you.

Love,Anastasia

lettres de guerre #8

IMG_4920-0.JPG
Origin (David Elliot)

grâce incroyable de voir comment le doux bruit …
(Amazing grace how sweet the sound…)

Anastasia
Sometimes
I seperate from myself
I see
See the fields filled with ash
See the hearts filled with stone
And
I see us moving
Inside the light
And shadows
Emptying chambers
In our guns
In silence
Picking out
The fragments
After bombing a city
We can’t choose
Anastasia
We can’t choose what revelation
Comes our way
But I saw
The words
I hear the hymn
In the back of my mind
And I hope that after
Ten thousand years
We will be there
We will make it right
I hope that I come together
Whole
I hope that
We won’t drag each other
Out in the streets
I hope that we won’t
See what one man
Can do to another man
I hope ….
That we come back
And then
We somehow
Remember how to live.
How to love you
Again
Sometimes
I feel as though
We only know how to…
How to destroy humanity
I know we should be keeping it safe

But it’s like this
One city
We stayed in
They’d had all their medical workers
Removed
After a black out
These were sent to the military…
Just before we got there
One of ours slept with a woman during our post …
He really just raped her
I have no better context
I’m sorry
He was apparently drunk
But beside the point
Having no Drs
No medical personnel
Within hundreds of miles

On the day we were leaving
She came out watching us
pulling out a revolver
She shot the private
In the face …
This is what war does to us
Collapsing in the streets
Our hopes
Of a better tomorrow
They’re fleeting
And vague .
And I am so tired.
I am so tired.
I wish I had better
News.
I wish I had better
Letters.
I wish there were words
For this
That left us…
Closer together.
So just say my name
Write about the taste of food
Tell me about color
Because all I see
Is gray
All I see is black
And I can’t lift it.
Anastasia,

Love,Charlie.

lettres de guerre #7

la couleur de rien
(The colour of nothing)

October 17th

Is there a color for nothing?
for this feeling?
you rearranged me
And
I’m afraid we’ll never be together
I poured my grief
Into the violin and the piano …
I looked for you in the Keys
I looked for you in the bedroom,
I looked for you in the gentle
Shadows of others dancing
but I could not find you
The shadow
In my heart

Write to me,
Your love
– Anastasia

lettres de guerre #6

Sept 3rd
My,A

do you remember
Staying in the flat, for three days,eating pepperoni and drinking red wine?
I said this must be what a king feels like
And you laughed asking why?
And I told you about grits
And biscuits

We passed through a small town very much the same ….
The streets were empty
And the windows boarded
I couldn’t help but think about it…
It brought me a kind of surreal
Peace.

I can’t do much else
Other than wish you
A happy birthday
I hope this reaches you soon.

Love, Charlie
P.s keep writing
I’m getting your letters
Every word
In time