Week eight of The Guardian Photo Poems presents poems inspired by a sobering picture of shoes filled with shattered glass in Tel Aviv, a tethered nomadic infant from Turkey, and the beautiful juxtaposition of nature and architecture at Alnwick Castle in England! The first poem alludes to Dudley Randall’s “Ballad of Birmingham.” I’d strongly recommend taking the time to deepen by following the link to the poem at Poetry Foundation to better appreciate both pieces. (All poems by Vincent H. Anastasi)
I’ll likely never know the souls
who bought or wore these shoes
nor claw through bits of glass and brick
‘till mourning renders true;
what I have lost cannot be weighed
in tears of Tel Aviv
nor bear the strain of mother’s pain
in Birmingham debris.
Busy with preparations,
the three nomadic women
fail to see the tethered infant
finding his way on all fours to the
bright, aromatic lemon halves lying on the
checkered blue-green-black blanket just within reach.
Spared the greater dangers
of boundless freedom,
he will only know the sour taste of
War of Attrition
Daffodils flaunt the fields yellow,
star-trumpet banners raised,
rooted to the grounds
around Alnwick Castle
in perennial siege.
Unmoved, the 900-year-old stronghold
that weathered Wars of the Roses,
whose stone seeds were sown
in furrows of the Norman Conquest
looks on in saecula saeculorum.