Your shadow has no head. Solid at the feet, it breaks
the chest and cements in the cracks of the Shaat al Arab Hotel.

I can’t see your hazel eyes, or read your dog tag.
I don’t know your blood group or army name. I wouldn’t be able to identify you.

Date palms, the Tigris and Euphrates, eye sockets of empty buildings.
The dusty rinse of a hot sky.

Bare torso, a can of Fosters, you’re submerged,
grinning in the stillness of a water tank.

I can see your tattoos: the England flag inked when you were seventeen;
a Celtic Cross on your right arm; Arabic script carved on the skin of your back.

You posing with an A2 Rifle. You on a Snatch. You backgrounded with fake tits. You jogging on tarmac. You in goggles. You walking away from the camera.