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Like Ravished Women with Severed Tongues and Hands

In those days when the city was torn again right out of the verses of Lamentations
Not by the voices issuing from the shtebels on the eve of destruction
But by blood and corpses, and weeping of hard-faced men
And missile-fire over Bethlehem, the screaming of mothers there,
And the din of planes in the dark of night demolishing our mutual slumber

In those days when the city was puking its guts out
When blood from the altars of the Valley of Hinom flowed over Aceldama,
At dawn, pillars of smoke would raise the stench to heaven
At sunset the smell of scorching would ascend on high,
Stinking through the shattered night

Only the Minister of Hatred, raving in a trance that flickered till morn,
Floated over the suq and the men sitting
In their shop fronts, shrunken, limp,
Then swooped down on a scattering of worshippers at the Wall, and circled
Sardonically, reeking of spring
Over the hills that knew so much and still kept their counsel -
Like ravished women with severed tongues and hands.

Michal Govrin

After the terrorist attacks in Beit Yisrael and Café Moment in March of 2002