THE WRITERS POST - Simon Peter Eggertsen





(ISSN: 1527-5467)
the magazine of Literature & Literature-in-translation.


JAN 2009







                            ARC FLASHES



                                                We went into villages after they

dropped napalm and the human

beings were fused together like pieces

of metal that had been soldered.


                        Dominic Bazzotto, 1972

                        False Vietnam report


The arc light flashes, strikes in the dark,

a cobra spitting and blinding.

Heat lightening in silence, ricocheting off the horizon,

like on summer nights in the valleys of Utah.

But this is a darkened street in Hanoi.


The metal snaps in response to the hit,

fusing hard to itself.  The white buzz repeats.

The iron sings on its way to becoming

an entrance-way gate. 

The white-hot weld, pulsing molten for a second,

 makes sure the fit. 

The twisting reptile cord coils and dances,

then stiffens and jumps as the charge rushes

through the line seeking cold steel. 

It wants it hot, if only for a moment,

to freeze the metal to metal.


Through the night, as I lie in the bed, the

flashed light, strobes the room, bounces off the wall. 

The storm of work rages outside the quiet walls. 

In the morning the metal lies cold and dead,

stiffened on the walk, stung over

and over by the hot viper. 

What were strips the night before now together

will become a guarding door, protecting others

from life's arcing strikes.

But first a red priming for its life to hide

the night’s hideous wounds.





The Writers Post
the magazine of literature

& literature-in-translation,

founded 1999, based in the US.




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