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Looked to Their Shoes

by Daniel Goodson

Grandma spoke Yiddish in hushed bedtime tones
When stories of war lost all dreamy charm.
Living battlefront screams and white naked bones,
We hid from patches and packed cattle cars.

The night was a railway yawning too far
For frail eyes to see, even if we could move.
A man in black clothes wept up to the stars,
Scatterings of others looked to their shoes.

My vision ended when we entered a room,
Lined two by two, a marriage of sorts.
The one to my left cried soft as perfume
Spread on the neck of a beast breeding war.

The reverie died as sleep left us bare,
Now I smell the fumes and dust in the air.