In a shared taxi, beet yellow in the
Carolina sun, an old woman describes
her exodus from a town overrun with
Jews. They trampled the Angel Oaks,
she crows, lining their
pockets with real estate deals.
In stopped-time, we could craft a retort:
That’s rather offensive, or Would you
like to finish Hitler’s work? or (with
a sidelong glance) Don’t you realize
you are riding in here alongside filthy Jews?
In her defense, the tropes drone on: we
are bankers, hypnotists, engines of overthrow.
Flame-wars grow fierce over statements by
Congresspeople. It’s blood libel and
bulbous-nosed caricatures all over again.
In a hospital in Ohio, bedpans clinking,
death rattles just around the bend, while
a doctor tweets a promise to pass the wrong
medicine to her Jewish patients. Firemen
hesitate to spray because all houses matter,
sirens of the muezzins, their truck a long red
tongue licking the wounds of the street.
Alisha Goldblatt is an English teacher and writer living in Portland, Maine with her two wonderful children and one lovely husband. She has published poems in Midstream Magazine, Georgetown Review, Mockingheart Review, the Common Ground Review, Literary Mama, and Portland Press Herald: Deep Water, as well as essays in the Stonecoast Review, The Wisconsin Review, and MothersAlwaysWrite. She was a featured poet in this fall’s Belfast Poetry Festival. Alisha also released a children’s book, Finding a Way, about her son’s rare chromosomal disorder and the beauty of acceptance.