by Kemmer Anderson
Ghosts of the Holocaust hover over the earth.
Chemical gas curls around the forgotten footprints left by Jesus
On Syria’s soil where fleeing refugees thread through
A narrow span of time, homeless targets in death’s hourglass.
The archeology of murder always digs up a witness.
Sirens scream. From the alley the echoing rounds
Of automatic weapons bullet through bodies blasted
Against an operational text written by the chess hand
Of tyrants. When conscience unravels in the wind,
Ash settles around the soul. Light flickers dims, snuffs out
The last syllables of sanity suffocating under the rubble
With a human fingerprint registered in the patent office
Of the maker whose drone armies fly like summer gnats
Around the eyes blind to beauty. The wandering Tiresias
Stumbles from Delphi with oracles dripping from pores
Sizzling on the altar fires with what lies ahead when Truth
Explodes into night rain falling on a city ignited
By the hounds of suicide bombers devouring life with teeth
Pulling on the fuse lines timed for the end. Furnace fires of flesh
Boil in the mirrored memory of Hiroshima evaporating the last drop
Of water from the sea of creation. All language is void, unformed
In the chaos of spoken howls silenced by thunder voiced
By the dark lightning from a Mount Olympus where the gods of war
In the shape of man now blow across the plain in dust – dissolving urns
As gravity pulls apart the shaded shadows of reason. It is finished.
Kemmer Anderson, poet, taught English for 40 years at McCallie School in Chattanooga, Tennessee, where he was Amnesty International Chapter advisor and B-team soccer coach. A veteran of U.S. Army in Korea and traveler in Greece, Palestine and Israel, he received N.E.H. grants on Milton, Galileo, Thucydides. A graduate of Davidson College, he has received a M.A. in English from UT-Chattanooga and M.A. degree in humanities from St. John's College, Annapolis. He has published 10 chapbooks and 3 poetry books: Wing Shadows Over Walden Ridge, Songs of Bethlehem: Nativity Poems, and Palamedes: The Lost Muse of Justice. He and his wife Martha lived and gardened on Wing Shadow Farm for 21 years.