Sunday, March 13, 2011


I have been watching, just like everyone else,  the images of the disaster in Japan in what continues to remain a very dynamic and heart-wrenching situation. 

Entire communities wiped off the face of the earth; survivors and rescuers who have to cope with what can't be easily coped with; a trauma without boundaries, whose  unknown effects begin to unravel now.

Being part of this reality is an act of heroism in itself -  any attempt to help others when one's own life is in danger is a gesture of infinite courage.

It's difficult to think of poetry under the circumstances, or indeed  think of anything else except wishing for a positive evolution of events in the upcoming days. Except thinking of the people of Japan, at the time when everyone wishes them strong. 

They are in my thoughts.


Jim Murdoch said...

Your post caught my attention and this was the result. Thought you might like to see:

In the Wake

( for Japan )

There is no poetry here.
This is the real world.

Poems can’t dig through rubble.
or tend the injured.

Poetry can’t sign cheques or
operate heavy

machinery in the dark.
Poems don’t know how

to comfort the bereaved since
they can’t explain why

the wave took their daughter or
son or brother or

sister or their father or
mother and left them.

Poems will come much later,
like tourists, to stare

at the devastation from
the comfort of their

safe, air-conditioned coaches
with nothing to say.

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Irina said...


Thanks for posting the poem as a reply. It deserves to be the main topic of a blog post.

My thoughts for the last two days have been that, given the desperate circumstances, words seem awkward -"with nothing to say."

No matter how awkward though, we need to talk about this now, not later, I think.

Wherever we might find ourselves.

Please stop by again

Shelley Banks... said...

Yet it's difficult to think that poetry won't come, and won't have meaning.

(And I'm glad I found your blog, Irina. I'm looking forward to reading more from you -- and your comments. Great poem, Jim.)

Irina said...

Hello Shelley:

Poetry will come, is there, has been there at the core of this tragedy but I don't see how its voice can be hear out until the shock subsides.

Glad to say hi, I liked your poem "Poinsettias" in TAR.


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