Thursday, July 06, 2006

Memory of the 7/7 bombing

A Routine Day

It was a routine day
the way to work
marked out by sameness.

Packed up like cattle in a truck
we’re all at pains to hide our shared humanity
like extras in a film,

strangers, obscure, unknown to anyone
apart from family and friends
apart from those who cry when we are gone,

apart from millions
who register a slender shock
to hear what happened next.

A flash of soundless light
changed everything, forever.
Bad editing, a jump,

or in a dream,
where brown and red
can shift around,

and no-one registers a thing,
not for a second,
not ‘til the pain cuts in.

Then it was noise of fear and pain
the bellowing of cattle
worse than an abattoir

much worse than when we kill to eat
goats, sheep and cows.
Why not just line us up

Go there, strip off, breathe in and die.
Why not that ordered Nazi neatness
To reach their goal?

Why tear us all apart like spoiled brats
who rip their toys and throw red paint
to get their way?

And yet I know that I’m the lucky one
to have a heart that beats
to spite that empty space below my knees,

although each time my eyelids close
somehow the pinkness of the filtered light
conjures up images of tortured flesh,

just torn up flesh,
no more or less.
Halal or hamburger,

I do not care

Whether the author of our pain
is now in heaven with a thousand virgins
or laughing in his mess with brother officers

I do not care

Or screaming in hell while demons
with exquisite pains
put him together carefully

I do not care

Or in the highest office in the world,
bathing in lies
drowned in hypocrisy

I do not care

You who can freely walk the streets
You do the caring.
I only want to walk again.

(c) Richard Lawson Oct 2005

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