By Rose Snow

THE HOLY LAND
 
I paint your shadows,
Turn your tears to diamonds,
Enliven your stories
With howling wolves,
Gather the mist to wrap you
In the cold dawn
Of your breaking.
I witness your treasure buried
In the ground,
And the discarded bits of
Grandmother,
Strewn in the murdered night.
I calm your horses
Tied to the mist,
Lay out your desperate milestones
With dreaming rocks.
Mark my vows
At your uprooting,
The squeezing of your hearts
Bleeding your histories
On the forest floor,
Vomiting your hopes
Into the heartbroken
Arms of the trees.
Mark my vows
As you surrender to sleep
On leaf beds
Or in the open houses
Of old men,
Hearts seasoned,
Beds full of tearless children –
And the wailing from the kitchen.
I rise before the nuclear sun.
I light your table by the window
Forced to satisfy
An invaders cancerous appetite.
His nullifying repose..
Something in it dying
As it remembers
Your hand fashioning it.
Wood has soul too,
It weeps for you.
I promise more diamonds
For your strangled tears,
More beautiful resistance.
I am the moon
I rise before the nuclear sun.

THE POTATO FAMINE

What was your name?
How many ‘greats’
Should I put before
Mother, father, aunt, uncle?
I know what it looks like
To starve.
An adult thigh fits inside
The circle
Of my thumb and forefinger.
A couple of centuries
Draped a black curtain
In front of your faces.
Deep water separates us.
But my ancestors
Wrote their stories
In my DNA.
And their voices
Echo in my soul.
Their sobs and screams
Are the fire that forges
The chains..
It’s no good saying
I don’t do politics.
Politics does me.