Hands of the Innocent

After Vesna Parun

Burying the hands of the innocent,
who could dig up the earth without
losing their mind? Who could ever
sleep soundly after the earth is poured
over the hands of children too young

to know of war. Who has a heart
that is not in permanent pain after
burying a child without a name,
whose song, ripped from its throat
will never find solace in the shade?
At night its voice will never cry out
for his/her mother. There will be storms

and then there will be more storms.
There will be more storms still.
Who could make sense of any of this?

I fear the echo of gunfire and think
of the hands of the innocent, who

never got to live their dreams. In
some mountain they are buried
far from the city streets and the sea.

Who could be so cruel? These are
sorrowful times. Who goes around

with a kind heart after burying sons
and daughters? You might be next.

Luis lives in California and works in Los Angeles. His poetry has appeared in Blue Collar Review, The Dissident Voice, and Struggle Magazine. Read other articles by Luis.