Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Iraq War Grief Daily Witness Day 30

A man cries as he waits to claim the body of a relative who was killed in a suicide bomb attack at the Baghdad Economy and Administration College February 25, 2007. A suicide bomber wearing a vest packed with explosives killed 40 people in the Baghdad college on Sunday, a day after Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki expressed optimism about a security crackdown in the capital.
REUTERS/Kareem Raheem (IRAQ)

A Calculus of Readiness
by Liz Waldner

I, too, come from the city of dolls.
A small palm is my umbrella.
This takes care of above
but below, the blind river of sadness rolls
on and in it, a hand is always reaching up
to pick fish from the night-time sky.

The lines on the palm of the hand lure a trout
with a strand of hair from the head of a doll.
The bait is the hope for a hand on your brow.
Shadows play on the wall. Or the face of a doll.
The plants eyeing each other
is all.

I would not call the stars generous.
They don't cry enough for dolls to play Drink Me.
They don't cast a covenant's fishy rainbow
yet leaf faces watch the open window
where they hang far and hard.
The rein of starlight a second hand

with which to play Go Fish.
Now Give me a hand, plants. Now give me
good-night, stars.


RubDMC said...

for peace

anniethena said...

for peace
I witness

ask said...

I witness.

musing graze said...


In Memory of M. B.
by Anna Akhmatova

Here is my gift, not roses on your grave,
not sticks of burning incense.
You lived aloof, maintaining to the end
your magnificent disdain.
You drank wine, and told the wittiest jokes,
and suffocated inside stifling walls.
Alone you let the terrible stranger in,
and stayed with her alone.

Now you're gone, and nobody says a word
about your troubled and exalted life.
Only my voice, like a flute, will mourn
at your dumb funeral feast.
Oh, who would have dared believe that half-crazed I,
I, sick with grief for the buried past,
I, smoldering on a slow fire,
having lost everything and forgotten all,
would be fated to commemorate a man
so full of strength and will and bright inventions,
who only yesterday it seems, chatted with me,
hiding the tremor of his mortal pain.

Translation by Max Hayward and Stanley Kunitz.

Wasim said...

Peace and hope

From "A day in the life of Nablus"
by Sharif S. Elmusa

In cafes men congregate in the afternoons,
slowly sip their tea
(as if time were their own),
shuffle cards, spur the backgammon dice
(as if chance were their own).
The listen to songs
of unrequited love, promises unkept , partings.
When the sun sinks behind the hills
they salute the fading day, irreconciled,
leaving the folded market
to the screech of armored cars.

moira said...