Ebony and weddingdress

Yet again the helicopter sings
for Aleppo funerals to come.
It brings its load of barrel bombs
it brings its gasoline and metal shards
to burn and cut the blood to soot.

Her wedding-dress is stained
like soot on alabaster
with white noise afterwards
fading into black
and yet a number.

White — her bloodless lips
are still unkissed
the groom is waiting
his eyes are black as night

A smothered parents’ hope
their daughter missed
ebony-lidded casket
and their mumbled melodies
Ivory of lonesome roses
from her bride bouquet
crushed against the lid.

Today Grace want us to write black and white in poetics at dVerse. I ended as I often do in the disasters of Syria. Bodycounts are real people.

33 responses to “Ebony and weddingdress

  1. Your poem expresses well the idea that so many innocent people lose their lives. What should have been a happy occasion ends in death & mourning.

  2. You have used very strong imagery in this poem, Björn. I like the way you used what these two colors often evoke and weaved the images to write a poe about innocent deaths and the joyous occasions that will never take place.

  3. The purity of white juxtaposed against the black misery is very effective. Body counts are REAL people. War is an abomination. Good for you for keeping it REAL and your poetry painfully relevant.

  4. oh dang – def. too many people’s life are crushed in wars – never thought about marriage as a black white theme – yet it is – like the keys on a piano – and yet so many in between tunes possible – if it happens – and so sad that it didn’t here..

  5. Ugh. Rather disasterous, on the eve of the big day, with all that hopes and dreams, to have it flushed away by senseless violence. The echoes will ripple out of that moment into the family and the community for sure.

  6. somehow disasters/war statistics, etc. seem to lose all meaning when we think of vast numbers…it’s only when we think of individual, real people that these events take on significance.

  7. Those accounts are horrible to read in the news Bjorn ~ I specially admire these lines: White noise &

    White — her bloodless lips
    are still unkissed
    the groom is waiting
    his eyes are black as night

    How tragic that what is a lovely event can turn into tragedy ~

  8. Visceral. I love bloodless lips never kissed and the idea of the ivory of lonesome roses.

  9. Brilliant use of the B&W prompt, working so much emotion & energy into the theme; so strong, tragic, beautiful, abominable yet intriguing as you have´woven this black rose in the mouth of a death angel.

  10. It is such a sad thing to witness the heart -rending feel on the return of caskets from the war zone. The quiet and chilling reception very real in your lines. Well penned Bjorn!


  11. And yet we are so numbed by the endless destruction, that we don’t even register the statistics any more, leave alone recognize that these were/are people- with hopes and dreams. Sad.

  12. Powerful contrasts of joy turned to grief, hope dashed by violence, lonesome ivory roses on ebony-lidded casket…yes, the victims are REAL.

  13. Those ivory roses crushed against the lid of her coffin….how many dreams died waiting…it seems hunger is so cruel in the length it takes to kill a person. Powerful and tragic is this poem.

  14. The “bloodless lips” and “eyes black as night” are the most striking part for me as that alone clearly defines the tragedy of the moment, of what supposed to have a cheerful ending. Our world today are extreme in both negative & positive way. A very effective poem to get emotional, Bjorn.

  15. What a strong and consistent use of colour throughout this poem, to really convey the contrasts – the ‘bloodless white lips’ was one image that particularly resonated, the ivory of lonesome roses standing vigil, the ebony coffin. An example of clear political writing (as if in response to what we were discussing yesterday at PubTalk).

  16. Ah.. perhaps the coldest reality of all
    is the virginal wedding dress waiting
    in black white for a stranger never
    known.. sometimes the bullets
    are culture of love
    given freely
    A dowry can
    be a gift or Rape.

    That’s cold reality.. but yes.. Truth
    for the lesser of man that is still woman…

    It’s sad when a woman sees her wedding as a funeral…

    IN fact.. it’s beyond tears to truly fear.. the end depends on means…

  17. You’ve taken a horrific event and made it very intimate and real. I think what really moves me here is the normalcy of a marriage and love mixed with darkness and death. Real people….not statistics.

  18. What a scene you create. Black and white, for sure. And then gray… so much gray…
    You illustrate the war-torn swaths of the world with great skill.

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