A poem of mine about the Syrian refugee crisis, No Country for a Jew, is now up at the current issue of Down in the Dirt magazine. The issue (January/February 2016, volume 134) is titled “the Breaking”(February 1, 2016). Many thanks Janet K.
Click here to read the poem : No Country for a Jew
No country for a Jew is accepted for publication in Down in the Dirt magazine, issue v134, January/February 2016 (to be released on 02/01/16). This poem “will appear in a number of places at Scars Publications (this is supposed to be a multi-pronged acceptance). Since yesterday (September 25, 2015), this poem is online : it has its own web page in the writings section of http://scars.tv at http://scars.tv/cgi-bin/framesmain.pl?writers. You have to go to the writings link, and under my name in the left frame will be the poem No country for a Jew, “which when clicked will appear in the larger right frame.”
No country for a Jew
Yesterday, I was the then Jew. I was there alone with all of us when fell open the dictum a Jew is always a Jew. Thereafter, it suited them to knead my blood. Bones rattled crawling back to hope. Cries caught fire sans flame in the throat. Trains dashed through my flesh into those camps. I died inside the walls with all doors shut but in a room for spammed memories to make a journey. No country for a Jew. A Jew will always be a Jew.
Today, swaddled in razor wire, you too look as doomed as I was then-there. Like a perfect Jew, you are all alone with all of you in the deep of the slime. Swelled bodies keep swelling with night. You had to flee the war as far as you can carrying your hope and leaving behind the shadow of beheaded corpses you’d thought home. They made you give up. And no country for a Jew.
Yesterday, I was a Jew like you. I had just nightmares to look on in the sky wanting my skin. No tomorrows called birds in the cold skull. No ports to land my imagination. I had to just carry my blood across the seas. A Jew will always be a Jew. I was as ugly as you are looking now. No country for a Jew.
Today, you are sailing on yesterday’s perilous waters. Remember, no ports to arrive for a perfect Jew. That’s what St Louis is meant for. Life has many masks but not death. Voyage of the dammed is calling my heart by name. I can hear you crying out, “Here I am!” You will witness the silence of the world with your own flesh like I did. No country for a Jew.
In the recesses of my mirror, I can see you locked in and flickering. I close my eyes. Light that brings back so many memories and revelations blinds me and so does wisdom. I know I’ve gotten to the point where I won’t enjoy to see us breathing together in the same room. You can hide in the history book of mankind. Just say “this is my death” and the world will agree to write it down in those pages of History. A safe place to unfold and remember your bones. Or if you ever survive, like me, you can be a Jew.
Note about the poem : I found myself slipping into the world of One hundred years of solitude of Gabriel Garcia Marquez as I read the dead bodies of 71 people believed to be refugees were found inside an abandoned refrigerated truck in Austria…. It was still ‘okay’ for everybody. And then surfaced the photo of three year old Aylan Kurdi washed up dead on a Turkish beach. It broke everybody’s heart! But lives are still slain, the exodus continues, and the tragedy of the millions of refugees is not good enough to break the silence of the world. I live far from those happening lands in Montreal. Every day, on my way to drop my kid off at his daycare, I have to drive past the Holocaust museum of the city. These days, I look at the memorial and wonder how “interesting” History can be, and how it is to “live in interesting times” (a Chinese curse).
However, you may not need a vantage point for contemplating History. Read also :http://www.alternet.org/news-amp-politics/wests-failure-take-syrian-refugees-has-echoes-holocaust