Dan O'Brien
"The War Reporter Paul Watson and the Lady Pol"

Better they should cover my mouth. They fear
the weal of her voice. Tangerine handbills
like Bollywood. Because she used to read
news on the radio, and then TV,
they accused her of seducing women
to Christ. Kidnapped her husband and crushed his
testicles like eggs. Lifting her burqa
to clamber over walls. Two men clutching
each other on a motorbike appeared
in her side-view mirror. Dragged her screaming
into the middle of a mountain pass
to shoot her till she stopped. A final shot
docked her ear. Bleeding into the heaving
ribs of a mountain ass, one bullet lives
encysted in her hip. Then a car bomb
on her way to campaign. Seven vessels
pouring blood. Sobs. Glass like diamonds showered
in the smoking red carpet of leaves shocked
out of the trees. Searching for my own flesh
in the naked branches. When I explain
my reason, no one understands! Their texts
promise to splash acid in the faces
of my uncovered daughters. I forgive
the Muslims who don’t know better. The man
in the street selling shoes—at least his life
will be improved. My life’s already been
spoken for.

 

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