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Ernst Toller: Corpses In The Woods

Anti-war essays, poems, short stories and literary excerpts

Ernst Toller
Corpses In The Woods
Translated by E. Ellis Roberts

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A dung heap of rotting corpses:
Glazed eyes, bloodshot,
Brains split, guts spewed out
The air poisoned by the stink of corpses
A single awful cry of madness.

Oh, women in France,
Women of Germany
Regard your menfolk!
They fumble with torn hands
For the swollen bodies of their enemies,
Gestures, stiff in death, become the touch of brotherhood,
Yes, they embrace each other,
Oh, horrible embrace!

I see and see and am struck dumb
Am I a beast, a murderous dog?
Men violated
Murdered.

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