1. Imagine sitting in your home.
2. Hold the love you feel there for a moment in your belly, let it warm.
3. Imagine the 100,140 killed in Iraq, and hold them in your heart.
4. Imagine the civilians and soldiers dying in front of your eyes, and you do nothing.
5. Rid yourself for a moment of political stance, and just imagine 110,140 bodies — bloated, breathless, lifeless, eyes empty.
6. Place the civilians and soldiers, 110,140 rotting war corpses in a row, build a road of dead mothers and fathers and children. Smell death. Smell those dead and rinse your skin with the blood of the dead, dead by world denial (our denial) of the importance of life, this bounty of breath we have been given. Make their blood and flesh your garment.
7. Imagine the length of that road you’ve built, body after body after body after body after body after body after body after body.
8. Walk the road you created.
9. Smell the rot, taste the meat in your breath, breathe death where you expected air, see your body covered in the blood of others, your friends, your loves.
10. Taste that pain in your heart and hold it until the war stops.
Now go change something.
Robert Allen is a writer and teacher in the realm of relationships and the men’s movement. His articles have been distributed widely on the internet. He’s the author of the Integrity Pledge, a five part pledge for men who love women, and want to love them better.
Robert lives in northern California with his wife, elephant journal columnist Lasara Allen, and two daughters.