I was forty, he was six
We made tanks from cigarette boxes
A tube of silver paper rolled with matchsticks
Their tips put opposite worked as bullets

Bang bang
Fired up in the middle it shot bang bang
My battalion drooled down, bang bang
His eyes twinkled like the big bang
My baby taught me what was living

He was forty, I was six
We made tanks from his cigarette boxes
Silver paper rolled on broken matchsticks
Their phosphorus tips were our bullets

Bang bang
You light it up and it goes bang bang
He shoots down his own tanks
His eyes flicker like the big bang
My daddy taught me what was living

This was how we used to enjoy
We couldn’t afford many toys
Poverty was our middle name
And Bang-Bang was our favorite game
Bang Bang.

Inspired by the song “Shot me down” by David Guetta.

Image found at
Image found at PS. I’ll try and post a photograph of the tanks made from cigarette boxes.

10 thoughts on “BANG-BANG

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  1. I love the sounds here, the rhymes and off/rhymes (i.e., six/boxes; enjoy/toys). It makes the poem move faster, and I think the sparse use of adjectives also kept the poem really active. I also love how loud it is, with the Bang Bangs throughout, because it is much like kids playing. I like the way it cyles back to childhood with the repletion with important but slight changes in pronouns to the I was 40, he was six, which made me think of the cycle of poverty.

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