When you lose a fellowman in Darfur
and see your sister being raped
by a horde of Jenjaweed
and have to lie down, soaked in the blood
of your neighbor, pretending you are dead,
When you remember the scene
of crushed skulls, buzzing with green flies
in the hills of Rwanda a few years ago,
When you wake up in a sweat
reliving Pol Pot’s mass killings in Cambodia -
When was that again, the 70’s, 1870,
1070, or the year 70?
When the hell did all of this happen?
does it really truly matter?
you wonder whether the fact that you are still alive
is another quirky twist of fate.
Listen to that homunculus president of Iran
asserting that the holocaust is a hoax,
promising that he will wipe out the State of Israel.
Listen to those neo-nazis in Russia and in the US
for whom black is still and always the color of doom
and gypsies ought to be sent back to the gas chambers
along with the gays and, who else, the Jews, of course.
Listen to Radio Maria and its archbishop, Archantisemite,
blaming everything on the ‘Yids’, when Poland,
which numbered 3.5 million of them before WWII,
has only Auschwitz left to remind him of their past existence,
it is now their ghosts he cannot suffer,
he who purports to represent Christ on earth
and who idolizes the Virgin Mary, both terribly terribly Jewish.
And what about the 4 million Congolese who died
either of famine, of disease or of torture in the last 4 years?
Yes, what about them? Where the hell are the reporters?
Selective memory seems to be the curse of the day,
and who ever said History has come to an end?
No it has not, it is the reflection of our darkest soul
and we want to bury it along with all the Auschwitzes we have erected,
so that we can build new ones without remorse.
A bilingual author and amateur photographer - English and French are his two "mother tongues", raised in Central and Southern Africa, Albert Russo is the recipient of many awards, such as The American Society of Writers Fiction Award, The British Diversity Short Story Award, several New York Poetry Forum Awards, and the Prix Colette, among others. Praised by James Baldwin, Pierre Emmanuel, Paul Willems and Edmund White, among others, his work has been translated in a dozen languages. His award-winning African novels and his hilarious Zapinette series have appeared on both sides of the Atlantic. He is a member of the jury for the Prix Européen (with Ionesco until his death) and sat on the panel of the prestigious Neustadt Prize for Literature, which often leads to the Nobel Prize. He has published more than 20 photo books with Xlibris and many of his photos have been shown at the prestigious Musée de la Photographie de l'Elysée, in Lausanne, Switzerland.
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