Home > Uncategorized > Laura Helena Brower: Heritage. The blighted fruit of war.

Laura Helena Brower: Heritage. The blighted fruit of war.

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

American writers on peace and against war

Women writers on peace and war

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Laura Helena Brower
Heritage

I see the gallows – O my son! My child!
That has been built for you. Not with these eyes,
These wretched, human eyes, so dimmed and worn
With tears unceasing since I learned your fate,
Your crime, your guilt, your plea, your punishment;
But with the clear, sad vision of a soul
Remorse-wrung for the sin that mothered yours.
O God! If they could know, could understand,
Those twelve men stern and silent, who condemned,
The judge whose icy voice pronounced your doom,
The careless, jeering crowd that thronged the court, –
O God! If they could know that mine, mine, mine,
The mother’s sin, sinned ere your birth, has brought
You, it and it alone, to this dread place,
The gallows’ foot!

For you were born – nay more, –
Conceived when all the world was torn with war
And mad with hate that slaked its blood-thirst
In a brother’s blood. And you were fatherless
From birth. The kind, wise voice, the strong firm hand,
The father’s hand that would have led you up,
From the road on which your feet have strayed,
That voice was stilled, that hand laid cold in death.
Too well the deadly shrapnel’s work was done.
And, helpless child, what could you do but drink
The poison of the hate that orphaned you,
And the worse poison of the hate within my breast
Alike for those whose work this was, and those
Who, weeping, came to tell me he was dead?
Ours, then, the guilt, – not yours, but his and mine –
That we had bidden you, you sinless child,
To come to birth in such unhallow’d hour.
How dare we loved when all around was envy, greed
For power that mocked the rights of weaker men,
And bitter loathing finding vent in war?
How dare we love when love’s sweet fruit must be
Heart-cankered?

You, guilty? No! No more than when
They laid you first upon my widowed breast,
And heard, unheeding, all the curses wild
I heaped on those who made you fatherless.

Not guilty, judge and jury, though condemned,
Not guilty, but the blighted fruit of war!

Categories: Uncategorized
  1. January 25, 2021 at 10:57 pm

    Thanks for your fight against NATO

    • richardrozoff
      January 26, 2021 at 11:50 am

      You’re most welcome. I quit posting anti-NATO news items almost six years ago because of an almost total lack of response. Now we may be at the end of NATO’s grand plan: Nuclear war with Russia.

      • January 27, 2021 at 4:35 am

        Lack of response did not mean that your anti-NATO news were not read and that they are not missed. We are all mired in our complicated, digitalized, noisy, hectic, tiresome lives, barely able to click the like button.

        Thank you for regularly reminding your subscriber that the alternative to peace is death.

      • richardrozoff
        January 27, 2021 at 9:43 am

        Thanks. I’ve tried to open a new Word Press site to renew the Stop NATO page but without success.

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