Friday, August 8, 2008

8/8/08 - South Ossetia

It looks like another regional conflict has escalated and is taking on global proportions. Here's to the new edition of the cold war, which never really stopped.

The War Works Hard
by Dunya Mikhail
Translated by Elizabeth Winslow

How magnificent the war is!

How eager

and efficient!

Early in the morning

it wakes up the sirens

and dispatches ambulances

to various places

swings corpses through the air

rolls stretchers to the wounded

summons rain

from the eyes of mothers

digs into the earth

dislodging many things

from under the ruins...

Some are lifeless and glistening

others are pale and still throbbing...

It produces the most questions

in the minds of children

entertains the gods

by shooting fireworks and missiles

into the sky

sows mines in the fields

and reaps punctures and blisters

urges families to emigrate

stands beside the clergymen

as they curse the devil

(poor devil, he remains

with one hand in the searing fire)...

The war continues working, day and night.

It inspires tyrants

to deliver long speeches

awards medals to generals

and themes to poets

it contributes to the industry

of artificial limbs

provides food for flies

adds pages to the history books

achieves equality

between killer and killed

teaches lovers to write letters

accustoms young women to waiting

fills the newspapers

with articles and pictures

builds new houses

for the orphans

invigorates the coffin makers

gives grave diggers

a pat on the back

and paints a smile on the leader's face.

It works with unparalleled diligence!

Yet no one gives it

a word of praise.

Copyright © 2005 by Dunya Mikhail and Elizabeth Winslow. From The War Works Hard. Reprinted by permission of New Directions Publishing.

1 comment:

Carlos Luis DeMedeiros said...

somebody likes the profits of it.
somebody needs feel: I'm the king of the castle...
nobody come close to my things!

nothing new under the sun
only a lot more of son of bitches
growing in number using fear as a shield to justified another conflict.