The Walk Through No Man’s Land

Refugees

The faces eager for survival.
The long walk through the cracked earth,
And little tunnels of Ataturk’s land.
The dawns of regathering your mettle,
The eves of laying down your arms,
The days that bridge dawn and dusk,
Courage and desperation.

And you just have to look at a little child
To see, how amber like, their eyes are,
Preserving the fossils of a long walk
While the soft-proteins, on their soles
And palms, turn to hedgehog skin,
And you can only guess the horror
That two innocent eyes can witness.

And here, you find entrapped
Inside a palpitation chamber, the locked
Ammunition of hate, that like
A tall pine tree, opening up and detonating
Thousands of tiny yellow pollen, shoots with no aim.
You hope to god, that invisibility boiling below
The poker face, will never hold an AK47
Or a grenade, or wear a detonating vest.

Hate, the kind that manifests in rage,
Is a sleeping giant, who when awakened,
Is no match for the innocent Lilliputians,
Little children who are caught
In the crossfire, of that never-ending war,
Divided by the count or absence, of a small piece of open skin,
That shoots little bullets, bridging life with life,
And yet lives mightier than a ballot slip
Through an open heart, the vote that counts,
In the most primal democracy of them all – love,
Which cares little, about a snippet
Of redundant skin.

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Author: meandererworld (Dilantha Gunawardana)

Dr Dilantha Gunawardana is a molecular biologist who graduated from the University of Melbourne. He moonlights as a poet. His poems have been accepted/published in Forage, American Journal of Poetry, Kitaab, Eastlit and Ravens Perch. He mixes science with poetry for a living, when what matters is the expression of both DNA and words into something serendipitous. Although an Australian citizen, Dilantha is domiciled in Sri Lanka, his country of birth.

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