Mairi Neil

November 2015 – Aftershocks

Standing together bloodied and numb
Deadly destruction all around
Terror has bruised the city’s heart
While muttered prayers abound.
Is there a sign the world will heal ––
Guidance we’d not been forsaken?
A deathly stench drifts from buildings
Row, after row, of bodies taken.

Amid the horror, fear, and sadness
Appears music for peace and love
A piano wheeled from nowhere
Imagine played as doves soar above.
Music, prayers, and songs,
Poetry and tales give people a voice
Most of us desire harmony,
A peaceful life our first choice.

Leaders meet and police raid
Angry opinions rent the air
But standing alone in city street
A young man bows in prayer…
A keffiyeh tied around blind eyes
cardboard signs at his feet
“I’m a Muslim, not a terrorist
A hug of acceptance all I seek.”

Standing together tremulous with shock,
Remnants of hate clouding around
People ignore prejudice and bigotry
A common love for humanity found.

Fine-tune ears to carefully listen
Encourage mouths to speak only love
Hearts to find peace and tolerance
Human touch gentle as feathered dove
We can stand together in peace
A strong united front to form
Legendary olive branches firm resistance
Multicultural acceptance be the norm.



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