So strange this land, old and yet young.
Where is this place of tall green trees,
and grey-haired men in unknown tongue?
I must have traveled summer's breeze.
Adobe brick quonset "chalet"
mud-soaked roadways in all the blocks.
WACs and wives and waifs everyday
midst hollyhocks and four o'clocks.
Los Alamos*, this place must be.
A land of Oz 'neath bluest sky.
Where science dealt humanity
a fatal blow, then watched it die.
A perfect paradox is this.
How splendid to contrast the two--
a lovely place, a devil's kiss,
and wisdom flowing like the dew.
I left quite soon but still recall
the secrets hidden on each page.
The lilac mountains looming tall,
their perfume of fission and sage.
August 5, 2022
for This or That, Vol. 13, poetry contest
by Edward Ibeth
*Los Alamos Laboratories, New Mexico, are where the atomic bombs were
created then dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, Japan in WWII.
Copyright © Ann Peck | Year Posted 2022
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