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HIROSHIMA

We are forgetting.
The dinosaur's teeth
Are relics shorn of impact.
How could it be otherwise?
Blood coagulates,
And shadows
Are displaced by the scraping sun.

They have been swept away.
The shinbones.
The whistling nostrils.
The ashes of the chimney of his throat.
The abandoned paws of the cat.

The square is clean,
Hygienic,
Orderly,
Certified for ritual.

Hiroshima
Is remembered
And yet forgotten.

In the temple of the standing cloud,
Treasured by consecrated hands,
A beaker of sunlight
Summons the memory of her disaster.
Her long and shining beauty hair
Falls out in slippage,
Staining the water, slowly.
Adrift in the silence of descending tears,
She drifts in piety, lamented.
Her stomach
Dissolves and slurps,
Voids through the anus,
Glurping.

Death is not a matter of instants.
It is a hammer that swings,
Echoing,
Through the hour, the day, the week,
The generation.
But eventually it swings to a halt.

In the ceremonial Hiroshima
The sun stands still.
It is the moment.
It is hot,
As always.
The silence sweats,
Waiting for the time.
It is the hour.
And now the school kids pronounce
Clear truths
In crystal voices.
Unassailable.
We are awake,
Remembering,
And yet forgetting,
Asleep in ritual.

This poem HIROSHIMA was first published when posted online by Hugh Cook on 2005 May 7 Saturday. Copyright © 2005 Hugh Cook.

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