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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

In the Blink of an Eye

It is always terrifying to see an outburst of war, as we can witness what is happening in Ossetia, in Georgia. Interestingly, most of the news sites do not talk about the approximate or about the exact number of the people' casualties. Numbers are not small, for sure. When something like this happens it scares the hell out of me. I am very familiar with the feeling of being under the fire of heavy artillery, pointing at me and at everything else around, people, pets, buildings, kids, cars and so on. You can’t beat that feeling. I remember the days when I was a teenager and on TV, they were showing the news about the war between Iraq and Iran. That was in eighties. It looked so distant and abstract. Somebody was fighting somewhere, a big deal. It's completely a different issue now, - whenever I see shit like this storming ahead, be it close or far, I feel like I am going to get punched by hammer.

How many people were killed there during that short time span of only a few days, how many of them lost their homes and all the possessions that took a life time to build? I really sympathize and empathize for what all people there have gone through, the people who had lost either their relatives, the close ones, either their earthly possessions, or the worse.

It is interesting, and I heard it many times by now – about the phrase: they didn’t have luck – referring to the people who lost their lives during disasters. It is one of the most brutal phrases that people are using, without even being aware of it. People just put a sympathizing expression on their faces, like, they are very sorry while pronouncing that brutal and superficial estimate.
In the blink of an eye anything we consider for granted could be easily turned into dust. And that’s the scariest thing about our reality. Terry Eagleton was right in one thing – one of the main threats to the world as we know it today, is its ability to disappear in a few seconds, and all that nuclear bombs and arms that cost billions of dollars a day to maintain are buried not only within their fighting positions but also somewhere deep within our subconscious as well. We are all aware of it somehow. Furthermore, we need to live with it for every day of our lives.


Jim Murdochsaid...

Jasko, I very rarely write about political matters. It's not that I'm not interested or affected by what's going on in the world it's just that my writing never seems up to the task. Beckett felt exactly the same, that he didn't have the words. This post did manage to break through and I thought I'd share my response.

The War and After

You vanished in a second.
That was all it took.
I blinked and then
you were gone.

A bird landed where you'd been.
I shooed it away.
A man stopped to
eat his lunch.

I asked him: "Could you move, sir?"
Soon a construction
crew arrived to
erect a

monument but not to you.
A dog came along
and peed on it.

Wednesday, 20 August 2008

J. C.said...

Hi Jim, this is an interesting poem for sure. Did you write it? I am in no way an expert when it comes to literary criticism or theory, especially when it comes with the poems which are the most hardest to deconstruct.

Jim Murdochsaid...

Yes, I wrote it today. It describes someone who sees a love one killed or doesn't see - they look away and then they're gone, blown to pieces - it doesn't matter really how. I was simply picking up on the "in the blink of an eye" remark. The narrator watches the space in the vain hope that the loved one will somehow reappear, chases away a bird, asks a man to move on, but in time the authorities send along some workmen to erect a monument on that spot but it's not remembering the narrator's loved one, rather it commemorates something else, the soldiers who were lost - it doesn't matter. When a dog comes along the narrator doesn't shoo it away. He allows it to lift its leg against the monument. That's what the narrator feels. He doesn't care about anything other than his personal loss.

J. C.said...

Wow Jim, are you saying that my post title inspired you to write a poem. How cool is that. I guess my blog is not so terrible after all. The poem has all the attributes of the modern poetry. I do not read much poetry lately, but this was really refreshing. Thanks for that.

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