poetry, proza

Mai Venn, Ireland, The Music Stopped, ~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai


Thunder rolls from guns were observed,
Mutilated young bodies
Arranged in red locks across the crowded

Shock, dismay and carnage,
Weeping tears mixed with speechless
Surrounded by extraordinary slaughter,
Bewildered young people, damaged for

Why? That is the question.
Will we ever get answers to this mystery?
Is it a mystery or an event foretold?
What did it all accomplish?

Media hype to drive Europe into
Did it work?
That is another question.
Who will give us this response?

The grim reaper of death, mingled
amongst them,
Who gathered the bleak harvest of souls.
Newsflash on our radios and televisions,
The world looks on, helpless and

Each country wondering, ‘Will we be
All feel heart-rending emotion for France.
We express grief with them and for them,
May their loved ones rest in peace.

~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai:

Like Virgil leads Dante through hell, Venn leads the reader through a bloodstained Paris, using strong and convincing poetic images. Through a picturesquely woven artistic structure, the poet has strung together harsh images that create the feeling of the current existence in France and the world. The title, ‘The Music Stopped’, reminds us how we felt when the attacks occurred, and also refers to the massacre during a music concert. The symbol of ‘The Grim Reaper’ is used, reminding us that souls are being gathered as we look on, ‘helpless and disturbed’. The image also reminds us that we do not know who will be next, where the next terrorist attack will occur and who will be killed. The poem ends in an unsettling note of ambiguity and sadness for the victims with the last line ending, ‘May their loved ones rest in peace’.

Frosini, Fabrizio. POETRY AGAINST TERROR (Kindle Locations 2789-2796). Fabrizio Frosini.


poetry, proza

Douglas Stewart, USA Mourning, Marchons, ~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai

Douglas Stewart, USA
Mourning, Marchons

Arms they hid beneath their cloaks,
Intent beneath facades of peace,
And fixed their paths toward Montrouge,
A concert, and 130 dead Parisians,
a City Mourning, Marchons.

The City of Light knew then its friends,
Rallied from the clovered corners of the planet,
The tears of auld allies and former colonies glisten,
Late enemies stood next to Marianne,
hands clasped in
Mourning, Marchons.

Current adversaries promise support,
old friends
Pledge support and, as 70 years ago, is
Paris Burning?
The City of Light lifts her torch,
Marianne sings,
Her standards of law and justice remain t
he same. Even in Mourning, Marchons!

~* ~ Commentary by Leila Samarrai:

The poem, ‘Mourning Marchons’, has the character of an anthem as it invokes archetypal images of France to condemn terrorism and to celebrate the best aspects of a country dedicated to liberty. The term ‘Marchons’, references ‘Le Marseillaise’, the national anthem of France, and reminds us all to never give up or despair despite great hardship. The poem opens, in the first stanza, reminding us of the human beings who were murdered by terrorists in Paris. The poet brings ‘Marianne’, an allegory of liberty and reason and a portrayal of the Goddess of Liberty, to life, and reminds us of the famous image by Eugene Delačrois, where Freedom leads the people (” La Liberté guidant le peuple”), conjuring up feelings of power, freedom and victory. The poet calls on the ‘/ marching, even in mourning /’, evoking the final victory of freedom and justice over pain and death. This poem reminds us that despite all that has been lost and is being mourned, France will never change: ‘/ her standards of law and justice /’ will prevail.

Frosini, Fabrizio. POETRY AGAINST TERROR (Kindle Locations 2593-2598). Fabrizio Frosini.