Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Poem: Cause of Death

Below is the poem which won 3rd place in the Poetry & Song category of the 2017 ISFHWE Excellence-in-Writing Competition. Last year, I finished 2nd with The Genetic and Synthetic.

Cause of Death

A dozen distant cousins
in Prienai, Lithuania
died on the same day
all with the same cause of death.

If my cousin who researched the family
had written down ‘Auschwitz,’
“Treblinka,’ or ‘Bergen Belsen,’
I think I would have nodded
and kept on reading.

It’s what I expect happened
to most of my relatives
who didn’t get out of Europe
before the war.

I wasn’t ready for
"townspeople with axes" -
Neither were my cousins.

"Townspeople with axes"
could be the name
of a b-grade horror movie
with vampires and zombies.

"Townspeople with axes"
should not appear
in my genealogy database.

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