How To Think About This

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bodies trampled

at the gates to another life,

all the screaming,


and scared eyes

of children clinging 

to their parents legs,

while I lay here in

the quiet of a weekend afternoon,

the coffee cup 

cooling on my chest,

my child nearby

watching the television,

something about

super hero dogs,

my heart aches

as if running low

of whatever it is

hearts need to run on.

I watch my son

smile and laugh,

that is until when

he turns to look at me.


◄ Desert Island


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Stephen Gospage

Mon 23rd Aug 2021 17:42

This is a very fine poem, Tom. The sad thing is that the West created expectations among some of the Afghan people which could never be realised.

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Tom Harding

Mon 23rd Aug 2021 13:45

Thanks all on the poem.
There is much to lament in the world but I think this episode has been truly stunning for many. There are points worth recognising on either side but my overall reaction was a type of paralysis. Not a particularly political one beyond a nihilistic feeling that this is place where politics utterly failed.
It feels impossible to process some of what we see in the news cycle... And finding a hopeful message to pass onto the next generation about what life is and what it means, becomes harder and harder.

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M.C. Newberry

Mon 23rd Aug 2021 10:40

The world has always had its share of human tragedy but today's global media brings it to us on a 24/7 basis. Nations
fail at any given time, with circumstances playing their part.
Question: is the West too mired in the belief that all nations are
ready and really willing to embrace its own hard-won ideals of
"freedom" and "democracy"? Or should there be a "step-back"
- as in Afghanistan - where decades of death and huge cost
sees a so-called unconquerable warrior nation flee from a
very familiar bunch of religious insurgents instead of standing
en masse for THEIR freedom and THEIR country? The original
9/11 motive for going there succeeded, but two decades have
clearly revealed no sign of any political/national will or desire
to act as a "nation entire" shoulder to shoulder and resist their
impertinent hugely outnumbered oppressors.
The West has been on another road to hell with all its good intentions, plus its protective 9/11 self interest. Tragedy takes various forms and this is one more
example in this modern world.

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John Coopey

Sun 22nd Aug 2021 19:02

Days of shame indeed.

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Sun 22nd Aug 2021 12:14

We are covered and drowning in media and indeed can often only respond internally as you well describe. Such news comes home to roost on our doorstep where we are vulnerable. A very poignant moment described Tom


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