A project I worked on for one of my anthropology classes has provided me with a great deal of material, some comic, some not so much. Ever since I scrapped the Drunken Poet’s Campout story last week, I have been unable to shake the ring and rhyme that has infected the muse attempting to safeguard my sanity during the conflict inducing, merry making season that is upon us. So, this week’s Friday Fictioneer prompt seems a good reason to share some of my research on the history of human conflict.
How humans express what matters most to us is an important area of study for anthropologists. Art, in its many forms, attempts to help us understand ourselves as well as the rise and fall of civilizations throughout recorded time. I use writing and photography to make sense of the world around me, since Apple has pretty much ruined music for me.
Many art forms have been used to commemorate the conquests of great civilizations, dance, painting, photography, poetry. Cultural artifacts curated in museums around the globe, where acts of treachery and bravery are on display for all the world to see, give us a magnificent pictorial record of humanity’s triumphs and tragedies. The ancient war depiction at the Karnak Hypostyle Hall is the standard by which war scene art is measured.
The horrors of war are at our fingertips. So, why do we continue to ignore the warning signs? I don’t have an answer. I can only guess it has something to do with mediocre poetry.
Wrong All Along
Greedy and Stingy sittin’ on the sea
First came land
Then came chattel
Then came tribes with a sabre rattle
See what I mean? That is enough to instigate a playground scuffle.
The commander commands, “Pillage the village! Plunder the town! Turn the world upside down!” Teams move out from the shoreline.
Beyond the buildings and parking lots there are miles of unexploited territory. Orders are to fill ’em full o’ lead and kill ’em good-n-dead. Players are motivated to show what they’re made of. They gouge the stoney ground and feed their bloody lust. They crush the citizens into dust.
It matters not the weapons at their disposal. They simply use what’s on hand for the grand proposal, until vulture and vermin victory spied. The battle is over and everyone died.
Credit: Bayeux Tapestry animation by David Newton
Music and sound design by Marc Sylvan