“burma”

a red tide of monks rising
alms bowls held to the sky
upside down to invoke protest
burmese oppression stifles
like sticky jungle heat
their red robes folding out
to penetrate the streets
the poor and hurting shout from rooftops
thousands are gathering in discontent
but brainwashed soldiers
in their olive drab
bar the way to freedom
gassy tears stream from faces
chocking lungs and dreams
the peace of Buddha met with raging violence
those thin souls of promise
beaten and caged
the iron fists of generals to win the day
and what is left?
a dead body so holy
face down in the muddied creek
but there have been witnesses
atrocities caught by the camera’s eye
and the world sees
and the world knows what has happened
now the strong will rise
and defend the helpless
surely they will not sit idle
but they do not raise a hand
as the helpless die in vane
soon shall all be forgotten
but those starving
those dead and languishing prisoners
they will not forget
the cage they live in
a country or a prison…
should we not answer?
those wretched cries so loud
or simply sit and watch
while the iron bars of poverty
jail the souls of men

-Jason Cyrus Akhtarekhavari 2/27/12

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