Sunday, March 21, 2004

It's the first anniversary of the invasion of Iraq by George W. Borg & his coalition of the village idiots; &, if anything, my opposition to their presence there has hardened. To mark the date, I've decided to re-post a poem that first appeared on the As/Is blog a couple of months ago.

Their Given Names
for Chris Murray

If we wanted or
needed to, we could
find out the names
of not just the nine
that prompted your poems
but all the coalition personnel
who have died in Iraq. We
won't, however, see any
TV footage of the
ceremonial choreography
when their bodies are
returned to the States -
the visual documentation
of the nightly dissembly line
that was the daily dead
coming back from Vietnam
put paid to that forever.
We do see footage
of the unscripted funerals of
Iraqi civilians, some of it
anyway. There aren't
enough camera crews around
to cover them all. Nor enough
time. But try finding out
their numbers & their names
in the sanitised anonymity
of acceptable collateral damage,
a category whose equation
seems to have no upper limit
unless we give it one. & that
won't come until we
give them back their given
names. & write about them.

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