Top Scoops

Book Reviews | Gordon Campbell | Scoop News | Wellington Scoop | Community Scoop | Search

 

John Tomlinson: A Post Election Peace Poem

Now that the Australian election is over we can get on with the real agenda: peace, disarmament, poverty alleviation, reconciliation. My first post election poem is below calling for solidarity in the struggle for a fairer world - John Tomlinson

Can You Recall?


By John Tomlinson

I remember that smell,
from when I was a good German.
I had a lovely uniform,
with lightening strikes on the collars -
I was stationed at Buchenvald.

I too, can remember that smell
I was a guard at Auschwitz.
I remember the sad faces
of the frightened, hungry children.

I also remember that stench,
my father told me about it,
when they killed the Palestinians
and drove others from Jerusalem:
but I also smelt it in Jenin and Balata,
Gaza, Ramallah and Khan Yunis -
when it came my turn to serve.

That miasma haunts my nostrils
since I hid in a church in Rwanda.
The priest had said it was safe,
and yet he led them in,
with hate in their hearts and
machetes in their hands.

I too, can remember that smell
in the cemetery of Santa Cruz
when they fired on students.
And at Suai where they murdered
as many as they could
even the priest and the nuns.
Their red and white bandannas
and their TNI weapons -
just after we voted to leave Indonesia.

I also remember that stench
from Biak, to the New Guinea border
where Kopassus kill and torture.
The TNI shoot people
for raising the Morning Star
their flag of independence.

I smelt that fetor
in the daisy cutter, cluster bombed
buildings of Baghdad;
and the detonated tombs
of the Tora Bora caves.

I remember the odour of death
in the shell-shocked ruins of Grozny,
and in the cities of the disappeared
throughout Chechnya.

From the smoke stacks of Auschwitz -
to the shallow graves of West Papua,
to the burnt out houses of Darfur,
to the corpses rotting in bulldozed refugee camps in Gaza,
the smell is the same,
the same dreadful smell,
is the same.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Top Scoops Headlines

 

Boris Johnson At Sea: Coronavirus Confusion In The UK

The tide has been turning against UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson. Oafishly, he has managed to convert that tide into a deluge of dissatisfaction assisted by the gravitational pull of singular incompetence. Much of this is due to such errors of ... More>>

Reese Erlich: Foreign Correspondent: Rightwing Populism Will Make You Sick—Really

The four countries with the most confirmed COVID-19 infections in the world are all led by rightwing populists: the US, India, Brazil, and Russia. Throw in the United Kingdom, which has the largest infection rate in Europe, and you have a common pattern. ... More>>

Dunne Speaks: Early Voting Is OK, If You Know Who To Vote For

Early voting is now open which is great for the 80% or so of the population whose vote does not change from one election to the next. They can go out and vote at their convenience without having to wait for election day. But for those who are yet even ... More>>

The Conversation: Biodiversity: Where The World Is Making Progress – And Where It’s Not

The future of biodiversity hangs in the balance. World leaders are gathering to review international targets and make new pledges for action to stem wildlife declines. Depending on whether you are a glass half-full or half-empty person, you’re likely ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On How The US Supreme Court Is Undermining American Democracy

If Joe Biden is elected President next week, here comes the bad news. If Biden tries to defend Obamacare, combat climate change (via say, a variant of the Green New Deal) or tries to improve the access of US women to abortion services , he will run afoul ... More>>

Gordon Campbell: On Trump’s Current Chances Of Re-Election

By now it seems clear that National have no fresh ideas to offer for how New Zealand could avoid the Covid-19 economic crisis. As in the past, National has set an arbitrary 30% ratio of government debt to GDP that it aims to achieve “in a decade or so,” ... More>>


The Coronavirus Republic: Three Million Infections And Rising

The United States is famed for doing things, not to scale, but off it. Size is the be-all and end-all, and the coronavirus is now doing its bit to assure that the country remains unrivalled in the charts of infection . In time, other unfortunates may well ... More>>

Binoy Kampmark: Altars Of Hypocrisy: George Floyd, Protest And Black Face

Be wary what you protest about. The modern moral constabulary are out, and they are assisted by their Silicon Valley friends in the Social Media club. Should you dare take a stand on anything, especially in a dramatic way, you will be found out ... More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
  • PublicAddress
  • Pundit
  • Kiwiblog