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Monday, April 06, 2015


by George Salamon

AMMAN, Jordan — Islamic State militants have seized most of a sprawling Palestinian refugee district in the southern part of the Syrian capital, Damascus, an area that has been under siege and bombardment for nearly two years already, according to Palestinian and United Nations officials and residents. The officials called for quick action by international organizations, the Syrian government and all armed groups to head off an unfolding catastrophe. Reports of killings and even beheadings were beginning to circulate on Saturday, worsening what is already a longstanding humanitarian nightmare for the 18,000 residents of the Yarmouk refugee camp. —NY Times, April 4, 2015; Photo: Residents of the besieged Palestinian camp of Yarmouk line up for supplies in 2014. Most of the camp has been seized by ISIS, who are fighting a Palestinian group inside the camp. (UNRWA/Associated Press)

What is their hell, the eternity we've made their own?
Hunger, fear, murder and death,
the destruction of the spirit.
It is the human will
creates their hell, where human cruelty
burns brightly.

For millions life on earth is
an eternal accident, smoke and mist,
misfortune and despair.
A place where every hope must vanish
and darkness must fall.

Poetry, we are told, is meant to see
the truth of what is, not seek
what is the truth.
It is not honey
for the poet's tongue.

George Salamon taught German at several colleges, served as staff reporter on  the St. Louis Business Journal and Sr. Editor for Defense Systems Review. He contributes regularly to the Gateway Journalism Review, Jewish Currents and The New Verse News.