Ashes, Ashes, we all …
by Gay Williford

They did not know war.
How it would erase
their wonder, their breath.

The sunny afternoon had ushered in delight
as a cluster of vocal young ones
cavorted in the bright, grassy meadow.

Carefree spirits swirled among them
As the children, wearing flowers in their hair,
conveyed a sense of gladness and well-being.

The grey enemy bomber, hungry bird of prey,
sped stealthily over the mountainous horizon,
indiscreetly dropping its atrocious cargo–
and life, as it was below, cruelly and abruptly ended.

Small, broken and scattered bodies
littered the meadowland – fractured pieces
of an integral state of being–
flowers strewn about as though
in funereal anticipation and respect.

A somber silence replaced the delight,
a heavy silence erased the joy,
the innocence here–
victim of an indifferent revenge.


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