world war whatever

one thing I’m very unlikely to see:
how the world’ll look after world war III
but I’m sure the place will settle down
the survivors impatiently waiting in their compounds
all the presidents and generals
their security professionals
slowly putting on their shades
as their emaciated slaves
finally roll back the thick steel gates

what a world they’ll stroll into
I can’t begin to
imagine it
how they think they’ll refashion it
in a way that’ll satisfy their old ambitions
the inequalities and divisions
prohibitions, coalitions, suspicions
the only hope would be to say
we fucked it up
so let’s get to work and clear this shit up
but first, no more generals
no more presidents and safe-deposit emeralds
no more cock shaped rockets
no more handshakes with guns in pockets
no more authoritarian regimes
no more kings and queens
no more politics of hate
no more real estate
no more countries with the prefix great
no more heads of state
from now on we all just work together
everything shared in equal measure

yeah right
close but not quite

they’ll probably look around
at the twisted buildings, the blackened ground
and think: now am I truly lord of the world
quick – get my beautiful flags unfurled
it’s a shame my enemies aren’t here to see
how I stand in this wasteland gloriously

the other side of the flash

so world war three
ends fairly
the planet is toast
and every last human being suddenly a ghost

benefits are as follows:

carbon footprint = zero
(ghosts don’t need heat, lighting or food, are essentially nude, don’t so much travel places as drift a little when they’re in the mood, so…)

inequality = zero
(ghosts are basically and identically dead, don’t lust after money & power but look vaguely lost instead, everybody draped in a sheet off the bed, so…)

environmental harm = zero
(admittedly starting from a crispy base, but nature slowly reasserts dominion over the place, so…)

risk of infecting other planets = zero
(even if they could build a rocket, they couldn’t ride it, guide it or carry tools in their pocket, and if they landed somewhere they couldn’t lock it, so…)

basically what you’ve got
is a shell-shocked planet that’s smokin’ hot
8 billion ghosts haunting the spot
at least until their guilt’s forgot
which is when, I guess
they’ll all coalesce
into one, long, rapturously heartfelt sigh
and lift like mist to the clearing sky