Paul Archer - photo Paul Archer - poet, translator



Dark Days

By 1.20 a.m. the firestorm
Raged 2,000 metres into the sky
Even the canals blazed,

Blue flames flickered on corpses,
Roasted brown, doubled up
In pools of melting fat.

Survivors fled Dresden
With the shrunken corpses of their children
Packed into suitcases.

Cindy, Cindy, Cindy Lou
Love my rifle more than you,
You were once my beauty queen
Now I love my M-16

Corpses from the nightly slaughter
Dumped in the Iraqi morgue, the stench
Of decaying flesh and disinfectant,

The bodies of children pocked with holes
From the power drills of their torturers,
Even their eyes are drilled sockets.

"We didn't want the bodies cleared from the street
We left them there for the dogs to eat."

We love our men more than our wives
- cos we depend on them for our lives.
A mother asks why her son died
- we know it's cos the politicians lied.

War in the name of civilization is
Civilization pissing on the poetic phrase,
The sculptor's figure, the artist's gaze...

Their power cuts out - these are the darkest days.

© Paul Archer - All Rights Reserved