earth wrung herself dry. she sits with empty breasts above the shut crying eyes and begging mouths of the children, who, when denied, eat each other. they cry for vague illusions and enough is never enough. she closes her eyes now, tired, worn. she finds it difficult to stand, to smile, to sleep. every night she is awoken by the stirring of the soft limbs lying beside her, their dirty hands grasping for milk.
soon the children grow. they march in lines to places where they forget themselves. eyes drifting toward the ceiling for relief, counting every miserable second. this is how it is, they all say, this is how it has to be. the elders towe