Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

BJ Ward: In Memoriam | The Victims of the Bowling Green Massacre

Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway 
“made a reference to two Iraqi refugees whom 
she described as the masterminds behind ‘the 
Bowling Green massacre.’ 
 
‘Most people don’t know that because it didn’t 
get covered,’ Conway said. 
 
The Bowling Green massacre didn’t get covered 
because it didn’t happen. There has never been 
a terrorist attack in Bowling Green, Ky., 
carried out by Iraqi refugees or anyone else.” 
 
--The Washington Post, 2/3/2017
 
. 
Pile the bodies high in Atlanta and Sweden—
     Stack all those unwitting heroes—
Count and let the grim math sweeten: 
     Zeroes upon zeroes total zero—
 
Here’s to the blood that wasn’t shed,
     That still courses through hearts and 
          untroubled heads—    
To all the victims and their families
     Who gather tonight, laughter their homily—
 
To the hollow clicks of the pistol—
     harmless as swallow chicks in Kentucky trees—
To the stamina broadcasting Kumbaya ecumenical 
     Unto the unsaltpetered breeze—
 
This alternative fact is a flower 
     Placed upon the empty hearse—
This peace is for the empowered 
     Who’ve learned to listen in reverse—

--

Copyright B.J. Ward. First published in Solstice.
B.J. Ward's books include Jackleg Opera: 
Collected Poems, 1990-2013 (North Atlantic 
Books, 2013).
B.J. Ward

One comment on “BJ Ward: In Memoriam | The Victims of the Bowling Green Massacre

  1. Barbara Huntington
    February 9, 2021

    Morning giggle. Thank you.

    Liked by 2 people

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