Gaza, From Far Away

Gaza, From Far Away

Waiting for the smoke to lift
I walked through a field
of heavy yellow grass
for days
after October 7th
listening, as if I were a god,
to the cry under my boots
dropping, stomping, killing
every blade under foot
in this field where children
once sprouted like reeds.

I hold an absolute interest
in the mounting toll
from my vantage point
of that war called Vietnam
when a monk burned
himself to a crisp to enlighten me;
how quiet misery can be
in a photo from so far away.

I can still smell the napalm
falling through the hot air
in the back seat of a taxi
watching my best friend Mark
limp toward the car door with forty-nine-year
old shrapnel still lodged in his thigh.

Together we read the obituaries.
Sometimes twice a day.
We’re still looking for those cats
we know or partially recognize,
who survived dead-end alleys
without a needle in their arm.
More than once Mark has told me,
war is not so bad as long as you are
the one dropping the bombs.

About this poem

It reflects a tragic situation from the perspective of a boomer who experienced a different war long ago.

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Written on May 23, 2024

Submitted by connectallan on May 28, 2024

1:02 min read

Quick analysis:

Closest metre Iambic tetrameter
Characters 991
Words 207
Stanzas 5
Stanza Lengths 1, 11, 8, 6, 9

Clarence Allan Ebert

As I mentioned; a Baby Boomer fighting cancer - first colon and now a little in my liver. Been writing poetry for a long time but never more so than during the COVID pandemic. Just trying to remain relevant. more…

All Clarence Allan Ebert poems | Clarence Allan Ebert Books

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Discuss the poem Gaza, From Far Away with the community...

  • JokerGem
    Excellently done-
    It transported me.
    LikeReply1 month ago
    • connectallan
      Thank you so much. I am enlightened that readers enjoy the poem, and even more so, as you were, transported.
      LikeReply 11 month ago
  • Vixility
    Nothing fascinates nor horrifies me more than the reality of warfare and the shedding of blood we impose upon each other. What I deeply appreciate about this poem—in addition to the stylized imagery and its concluding aphorism—is that the poem is (presumably) written by an individual who experienced this dark facet of our human nature. Allusions, of course, direct our attention to contemporary wars abroad, and no doubt an opinion of it is here hinted at. When an individual—especially a poet—who has experienced first hand the cruelty and consequences of war’s rapacious nature comes to me with something to say concerning it, my ears are open. 
    LikeReply1 month ago
    • connectallan
      Thank you. I genuinely appreciate your thoughts and words that will inspire me more.
      LikeReply1 month ago
  • Benridj
    Gaza, From Far Away evoked in me the most clearest and most original reaction of the month's submissions. It held a powerful comparison of two conflicts together in my mind without passing simple judgement, it seemed to speak poetically but from experience. 
    LikeReply1 month ago
    • connectallan
      Thank you. I am inspired by your thoughts and words.
      LikeReply1 month ago
  • ArieCastle
    I think the world should hear more of the thoughts that veterans keep to themselves most of the time. Maybe it wouldnt be such an ugly place if more shared. Thank you.
    LikeReply1 month ago
    • connectallan
      Thank you. Your thoughts and words are relevant and inspiring.
      LikeReply1 month ago


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"Gaza, From Far Away" STANDS4 LLC, 2024. Web. 24 Jul 2024. <,-from-far-away>.

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