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Saturday, September 26, 2015


by Philip C. Kolin

The UN humanitarian aid chief has expressed alarm after UN agencies were ordered out of rebel-held parts of the Luhansk region in eastern Ukraine. Stephen O'Brien said the agencies had been told to leave by Friday, and several international non-governmental organisations (NGOs) by Saturday. Pro-Russian rebels seized parts of the Luhansk and Donetsk regions last year. Almost 8,000 people have been killed since fighting erupted in eastern Ukraine in April 2014, a month after Russia annexed the southern Crimea peninsula. A ceasefire in eastern Ukraine has been holding in the past two weeks, although there have been reports of occasional shelling. —BBC News, September 25, 2015

In the Ukraine this year
it is hard to tell
crops from corpses
except for red cabbages
that bleed all over
the fields. The white heat
from exploding artillery shells
only rain compost heaps of
hearts, lungs, spleens, moans.
The Politburo keeps denying
that its soldiers have been
trying to impersonate farmers.

Philip Kolin is the  University Distinguished Professor at the University of Southern Mississippi where he also edits  the  Southern Quarterly. He has published more than 40 books on Shakespeare, Tennessee Williams, Edward Albee, African American playwrights as well as  seven collections of poems. His most recent book  is Emmett Till in Different States: A Collection of Poems forthcoming in November from Third World Press.