Tuesday, March 5, 2013

"The New War" in current issue of "War, Literature and the Arts"

War, Literature and the Arts vol. 24 cover from lisabmusic.blogspot.com
Here's the new issue of War, Literature and the Arts including one of my poems. I'm really enjoying it, especially the nonfiction. The journal is published by the U.S. Air Force Academy, interestingly.


My poem in this issue, called "The New War," was written as an epilogue to my poem sequence "Persephone Post-War." It's reprinted below. Go to the magazine for the evocative work filling the rest of the magazine, many of it by soldiers and veterans. 

L i s a  B e r n s t e i n  (L i s a  B)

The New War

The new war has started.
Photos of caskets
disappear the next day from the newspapers.
The new wounded come home
with nano-reels of film curled
in their cells, inscriptions
for their children,
genetic messages for the living world.

The civilians recall their airtight homes
as one frame appears on the news
and another:
the man with the hood over his head
and wires strung from his extended arms,
the man crouched naked before the dogs…

The new war has started.
The new wounded come home
with hidden inscriptions for their children…

Do you hear the singing far below us, the stirring
in the soft dirt?

I won’t walk again on that darkening ground.
I can still taste the rotten fruit
where the dead keep turning
and the sweet honey I found near it.
Let the fruit fall here in the open light
where we can see it and eat it.

But the veterans will go down again, Persephones,
every winter,
and if they’re lucky, only then.

The new war goes on.
The soldiers send messages, digital snapshots
like bright, strange apples fallen to earth—
the red blood, the randomly arranged bodies.

Sickening fruit—may it fall
into the light
and be seen by the world.

copyright © 2013 Lisa Bernstein

1 comment:

  1. Yes, the experience of war lives with those of us who were there always. I'm just starting to write poetry about it too. It helps.


Thanks for adding your voice!