The Iron Cross

Mark Vuletic



When the eleventh came,
          He watched dispassionately.

His wandering eye
          passed over the trapped,
          passed over the afflicted,
          passed over the dying,
                    and settled upon an iron cross.

His omnipotent hand helped no one,
          but shielded the cross
          when the towers fell,
          protected it as it crushed
                    the innocents beneath it,
          and guided it
          with loving affection
                    to its resting place.

The heroes moved the debris

          and there it was,
          lying there:

          divine excrement on the mass grave of the murdered.

They took it,
          raised it upright,
          knelt before it,
          blessed it.
                    The priest sprinkled it with holy water,
                    the heroes with their tears.

They called it a miracle,
          though there had been no miracle for the dead.

I cannot understand.
          They are my brothers and sisters,
          and yet they are strangers.

But I am sure He looks down from above

                     —He who saved naught
                    but a blood-spattered iron cross—

          and says that it is good.


First published: 2001
Last updated: 21 Mar 2008

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