Refugeehood (a poem)
Dedicated to the orphaned and lost refugee children…
“Be still, child,” I say, my voice hollow,
As your small curly head rises and falls
On my chest, heartless and aching.
“Still, now,” I breathe, running my pale fingers
Through the dark innocence of your curls.
Think not of the stormy waters,
The feeble boat bloated with passengers,
Your parents, maybe, an elder sibling,
Passing on the humanity bombed out of them,
As words detonated on the cracked pavement of their skin.
My nose in your business, I wanted none of yours in mine.
The moment you, alone, wandered into my life,
The one so set and stable and gemütlich,
It sent a shudder of unwanted strife,
And brought back bleary, old unheimlich.
Now we’re here, the two of us,
Just a couple hands on an old man’s watch,
Watching us, doing nothing and everything.
I don’t know, child, we’re lost, the two of us,
Me, here at home, you, with no home.
And to think that I, your guarded guardian,
Your careless caretaker, must’ve freed the raging bull
And sent its ragged truth to tear your clothes to rags
And aimed the homing missiles of its horns
To miss, by mere miles, your home now sinking in the rubble.
So I digress, “Be still, child.
You’re home now, stay.
This place, your home,
Is mine when it is ours.”