The Sound of Rape

Nix Angst! Yells the soldier / who just raped / my wife / in front of our baby / don’t fear! A pat on the shoulder / and an earnest smile / from a man no longer a man / Russki gut! He says / in broken German / I, a half Jew / have been forced / to trade one master for another / and the look on her face is like a shovel dug into my chest / don’t look / she had said / I couldn’t oblige / the wailing of our child / is a train coming to a sudden halt / of steel grinding against steel / of human beings robbing each other of humanity / it is the sound of rape / imprinted into paper skin / of a rose crushed into a book

To the bird lost

Inside the subway tunnel
The frantic bird who’s flying
To and fro
You have forgotten
that the world is open on the outside
That there is endless space
Space that the sky represents
You have forgotten the fresh air
Your little lungs grow spastic
As you tilt your head
Absurdly standing centimeters tall
On a gray subway platform
You have broken my heart, bird
This would have never happened
If we weren’t here
You are God trapped in our small minds
Searching for a way out
You are an embodiment
Of our existence
And that, for human beings
Escape is possible
But improbable