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Saturday, August 03, 2019


by Christopher Woods

From left: Felipe Gomez Alonzo, Carlos Gregorio Hernandez Vasquez and Jakelin Caal Maquin are three of the children who have died in the custody of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. Family photos via NBC News. “A group of doctors from Harvard and Johns Hopkins has urged Congress to investigate the deaths of six migrant children who were held in government custody after crossing the southern border in the past year, warning that “poor conditions” at U.S. facilities are increasing the risk of spreading deadly infectious diseases, especially the flu. The doctors, who wrote to Congress on Thursday, said autopsy reports show that at least three of the children—ages 2, 6 and 16—died in part as a result of having the flu, a far higher incidence of such deaths than across the general population. Child flu deaths are rare, the doctors said, and should be preventable.” —The Washington Post, August 1, 2019

for the American concentration camp dead

Children know so little
about prayer.
But they have seen
and felt
the devil's breath,
and how very rare it is
for angels to come
down to them
to rescue their bodies
from the devil's work.

Pray for them, won't you?
Even if prayer seems a forgotten tongue,
if supplication is just another word
Someone, somewhere
Might hear
Come down from on high
To make things right.
To cast out the monsters
That took our prayers away.

Christopher Woods has published a novel, The Dream Patch; a prose collection, Under A Riverbed Sky; and a book of stage monologues for actors, Heart Speak. His photographs can be seen in his gallery. His photography prompt book for writers From Vision To Text is forthcoming from Propertius Press.