Terry Robinson (HE George), UK (England) And the Writing’s on the Wall, Commentary by Leila Samarrai


From cave pictures, with hand
sprayed self portraits.
To a church’s pulpit displaying
Psalm Twenty Three.
The writing’s on the wall

From mud huts to stately
homes.
The writing’s on the wall

From the nail driven torso
hanging from the eaves.
To bullet chipped, blood
soaked wall of the firing squad
The writing’s on The Wall

From the cleaved head. That
reminisces Salome’s deed.
To a child’s barrel-bombed and
desecrated body. Too
late to share its uncorrupted
mind.
The writing’s on The Wall

And from the push of the first
button to the
push of the final button.
There will be NO writing on
the wall

Is that the writing we want
for us?
The world is at war. Humanity
is in flames.
And I have tears. But, nowhere
to cry.

~* ~

Commentary by Leila Samarrai: This amazing, well-crafted poem doesn’t contain the usual rhetoric related to terrorism such as descriptions of bloody shouts, strong shocks, gas masks, or bombs. The voice of this fantastic poet, Terry Robinson, shows through seemingly unrelated metaphor on the effects of terrorism throughout time. I see this history through images ranging from the head of John the Baptist, the pierced body of ‘homo erectus’, to the poor infant in the ancient days of Sumerian Civilization in Mesopotamia. I see shattered heads; I escape Salome’s wrath; and I walk through the epochs, through history. These words and images are united in their marrow, and all this is accompanied by the mantra, “The writing’s on The Wall”, that will echo in my ears, maybe forever. This phrase emphasizes his point that mankind has a propensity for violence or terrorism and this nature is the ‘writing on the wall’, or something that cannot be changed. A good poet often transcends genre or topic, and here, images and words fly through the ages, transcending time until the dystopian end when the poet turns to his own humanity, as well as to the remains of the world, surrounded by ruins, in the manner of a post-apocalyptic hero when he writes: ‘/ The world is at war. Humanity is in flames. / And I have tears. But, nowhere to cry /’. The poet conveys a universal message that the world is changing, but the scenery remains the same. The room for interpretation is not immense, but it is ambiguous, seemingly without hope or even a small opening through which one can cry and breathe. A circle has neither a beginning nor an end: it is one single, continuous line, a never-ending cycle without progress, where the past is endlessly repeated.. ‘until he comes out at the beginning’ (Fishman). Or, should I quote Jim Morrison, ‘This is the end, My only friend’.

Frosini, Fabrizio. POETRY AGAINST TERROR (Kindle Locations 2280-2284). Fabrizio Frosini.

 

 

Mai Venn, Ireland, The Music Stopped, ~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai


 

Thunder rolls from guns were observed,
Mutilated young bodies
Arranged in red locks across the crowded
room,

Shock, dismay and carnage,
Weeping tears mixed with speechless
teens,
Surrounded by extraordinary slaughter,
Bewildered young people, damaged for
life.

Why? That is the question.
Will we ever get answers to this mystery?
Is it a mystery or an event foretold?
What did it all accomplish?

Media hype to drive Europe into
submission.
Did it work?
That is another question.
Who will give us this response?

The grim reaper of death, mingled
amongst them,
Who gathered the bleak harvest of souls.
Newsflash on our radios and televisions,
The world looks on, helpless and
disturbed.

Each country wondering, ‘Will we be
next?’
All feel heart-rending emotion for France.
We express grief with them and for them,
May their loved ones rest in peace.

~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai:

Like Virgil leads Dante through hell, Venn leads the reader through a bloodstained Paris, using strong and convincing poetic images. Through a picturesquely woven artistic structure, the poet has strung together harsh images that create the feeling of the current existence in France and the world. The title, ‘The Music Stopped’, reminds us how we felt when the attacks occurred, and also refers to the massacre during a music concert. The symbol of ‘The Grim Reaper’ is used, reminding us that souls are being gathered as we look on, ‘helpless and disturbed’. The image also reminds us that we do not know who will be next, where the next terrorist attack will occur and who will be killed. The poem ends in an unsettling note of ambiguity and sadness for the victims with the last line ending, ‘May their loved ones rest in peace’.

Frosini, Fabrizio. POETRY AGAINST TERROR (Kindle Locations 2789-2796). Fabrizio Frosini.

 

Douglas Stewart, USA Mourning, Marchons, ~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai


Douglas Stewart, USA
Mourning, Marchons

Arms they hid beneath their cloaks,
Intent beneath facades of peace,
And fixed their paths toward Montrouge,
A concert, and 130 dead Parisians,
a City Mourning, Marchons.

The City of Light knew then its friends,
they
Rallied from the clovered corners of the planet,
The tears of auld allies and former colonies glisten,
Late enemies stood next to Marianne,
hands clasped in
Mourning, Marchons.

Current adversaries promise support,
old friends
Pledge support and, as 70 years ago, is
Paris Burning?
NO!
The City of Light lifts her torch,
Marianne sings,
Her standards of law and justice remain t
he same. Even in Mourning, Marchons!

~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai:

The poem, ‘Mourning Marchons’, has the character of an anthem as it invokes archetypal images of France to condemn terrorism and to celebrate the best aspects of a country dedicated to liberty. The term ‘Marchons’, references ‘Le Marseillaise’, the national anthem of France, and reminds us all to never give up or despair despite great hardship. The poem opens, in the first stanza, reminding us of the human beings who were murdered by terrorists in Paris. The poet brings ‘Marianne’, an allegory of liberty and reason and a portrayal of the Goddess of Liberty, to life, and reminds us of the famous image by Eugene Delačrois, where Freedom leads the people (” La Liberté guidant le peuple”), conjuring up feelings of power, freedom and victory. The poet calls on the ‘/ marching, even in mourning /’, evoking the final victory of freedom and justice over pain and death. This poem reminds us that despite all that has been lost and is being mourned, France will never change: ‘/ her standards of law and justice /’ will prevail.

Frosini, Fabrizio. POETRY AGAINST TERROR (Kindle Locations 2593-2598). Fabrizio Frosini.

 

Leila Samarrai, Serbia Où vas-tu, Seigneur?


 

A happy game
a first strike
with a ball
in Paris
a first turn
then
turn around
play begins
in Paris

“Où vas-tu, Seigneur?”
The crying stops
the laughter stops
the clocks stop
the dance stops
the ball stops
in midair
breaths are held
the seeds of terror sown
in Paris
“Mais, où étais-tu, Seigneur?”
The jackals and scoundrels
are exposed..
to a fallen mankind
It is the end of the world.
It has begun..

~*~

Commentary by Valsa George Nedumthallil:

As a bolt from the blue, when terrorists abruptly unleashed terror on a group of people who had gathered in the concert hall to spend one evening in joy, they were stupefied by a horror too deep for expression! The poet here has captured that freezing moment in all poignancy. The clocks suddenly stopped and time stood still; the music stopped and the pall of gloom suddenly fell..! Through broken images, the magnitude of the crime and its impact are successfully conveyed. The day is almost like an apocalypse or Doom’s day. The poet denounces the attack as a scoundrels’ act and wonders if the world is falling into the hands of a pack of scoundrels!