HOME FRONT WAR ZONE

 

More heavy rain, thinking of everyone in BC affected by flooding. I pray, in my devout atheist fashion for them. Speaking of victims, this Sharon Olds poem brings to mind my sisters and our upbringing. My take; it’s about family, the “Senior Officers,” parents. Ours should have been indicted. I suppose they were until we summoned forgiveness, though middle daughter never could, far as I can tell. The home front was a war zone and impotent rage is the worse kind for it is painfully infuriating. As children, we had no way to defend ourselves and a school picture is worth zero words.

 

INDICTMENT OF SENIOR OFFICERS

In the hallway above the pit of the stairwell
my sister and I would meet at night,
eyes and hair dark, bodies
like twins in the dark. We did not talk of
the two who had brought us there, like generals,
for their own reasons. We sat, buddies
in wartime, her living body the proof of
my living body, our backs to the vast
shell hole of the stairs, down which
we would have to go, knowing nothing
but what we had learned there,
so that now
when I think of my sister, the holes of the needles
in her hips and in the creases of her elbows,
and the marks from the latest husband’s beatings,
and the scars of the operations, I feel the
rage of a soldier standing over the body of
someone sent to the front lines
without training
or a weapon.

 

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