Monday, July 14, 2014

As They Lay Dying

How can any Jew live with what is happening to the people of Gaza now? People being told to run for their lives when there is no place to run, when the sea and border are the sources of killing barrages. What are the supporters of Israel's Occupation hoping for--that Palestinians will disappear , go up in ashes and let Israel get on with its well connected life. Go up in ashes. Israel as a state will forever be tainted by its murderous Occupation, by this death falling from the skies that it alone controls--the sky, the ocean, the earth, this is what happens when gods go mad. We are a people now driven mad by our own history and what we thought it demands of us. The final victory of those who wanted us to disappear from the earth--to turn us into them.

by Muriel Ruckeyser

I lived in the first century of world wars.
Most mornings I would be more or less insane,
The newspapers would arrive with their careless stories,
The news would pour out of various devices
Interrupted by attempts to sell products to the unseen.
I would call my friends on other devices;
They would be more or less mad for similar reasons.
Slowly I would get pen to paper,
Make my poems for others unseen and unborn.
In the day I would be reminded of those men and women
Brave, setting up signals across vast distances,
Considering a nameless way of living, of almost unimagined
As the lights darkened, as the lights of night brightened,
We would try to imagine them, try to find each other,
To construct peace, to make love, to reconcile
Waking with our sleeping, ourselves with each other,
Ourselves with ourselves. We would try by any means
To reach the limits of ourselves, to reach beyond ourselves,
To let go the means, to wake.

I lived in the first century of wars.

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