Not my memories,
not of this particular barbarity,
no visceral visions of this blood-letting,
these burnings and butchery.
I have no recall of screams of terror
in a tongue I do not know,
no stories told with bitten and chewed words,
the silences between filled with weeping.
But scratch a little,
just below the surface of our well-being,
and they are there,
the sounds and the tastes of uniformed massacres
or silent deaths in hovels unremembered.
For some, the pain is overlaid
with too many layers of smug triumphalism
or the half-felt shame of the perpetrator.
Deep down the grief is the same,
graven in the same stone,
dug from the same earth,
blood, bone and marrow in the same mould,
what binds us all together with guts of joy and sorrow.
It is called humanity.