Yours is the comfortable
in the wit
and meaty eastern europe winters
of your working hands.
Even the intelligentsia
of ghetto had thick hands.
if I would have had the same
faith, or lack of.
And you sit red-faced
feeling awash in what you aren’t.
We should have died in their place,’’”
I remember a blaze and winds.
We braced a ladder bellies up
Ghost partisans held the smoke at bay,
to a fifth story window. We
hammered fists against the glass.
When I was younger,
I knew some of your peers
in the hot levantine orchards.
Leather-necked socialists, jews,
They should have died with the others.
their skin crackled to parchment,
laugh lines furrowed at committee meetings,
thought lines shimmered in bonfires,
voices rose up
entwined in ashes
of the dead,
of the twigs
collected by bronzed kindergartners after naptime.