MADONNA OF THE RUBBLE

Written by: Miguel Mendoza

Forgetting is a vain refugee camp,
    Madonna, for still these walls get
    breached, amidst the daily, frenzied
    barter of honed art for bread,

While slaking arid, thirsty hours with
    bits of loving, or even in deep sleep's
    opiate-laced salve; your shrill wail
    ricochets on palisades of silence,

Wrecking dreams, when your arms
    thrust out, ghost-like haunt heart's
    corridors to pained remembrance
    of your hearth bulldozed to jagged

Rubble, grating deep your ample
    loins that Gaza noon of nightmare,
    hooking deeper yet the piercing
    scythes of questions as regards

Your fate and of your son's. Again,
    the mind turns, tosses on this bed
    of dusty shards and tear-anointed
    debris as you once more scream

Your picture-perfect, front-page, 
    silent pain, yet made more potent 
    than all sounds heard down old 
    Palestine when wailing, wreathed

The wretched walls bedaubed with blood
    of innocents, when wanton death and
    mayhem, too, by Herod's mighty hand
    decreed, made firm, held sway.