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The 81st Anniversary of the Bombing of Guernica


by Kayla Knight

If I were to write a poem about you, my haunted Spanish artista, I wonder what it would look like.

Can words on a paper simple lines and colorless letters sum up what I feel when I see you fears?

The war. A war I cannot imagine, young and innocent as I am.

Would the words be jarring, a handful of stinging bullets, LOUD and TOXIC, bombs and sirens and screams?

Would they be sloooow and sluuured, blood seeping into the streets, or the last rattling breath of a dying man?

Or would they be quiet? The quiet would be worst, I think an aftershock of loss and pain, salty tears whispering down the cheeks of mothers holding still children, prayers murmured into the night.

Mi Dios Ayudame *Por favor

© 2010 by Kayla Knight

* * * *

On 26 April 1937, the historic Spanish Basque town of Guernica became the scene of one of the first and most deliberate crimes against humanity to take the world’s attention.  The bombing of the town of Guernica eighty-one years ago today by German and Italian warplanes at the request of the Spanish Nationalists, killed more than 1,600 civilians, the majority women, and children. 

The bombing of Guernica, which remains one of the most heinous crimes committed in modern history, was immortalized by Pablo Picasso in his most celebrated painting.

The Guernica Group took its name from this tragic event to commemorate the victims, to never forget and to embrace the fundamental need to hold truth, justice and accountability at the core of our mission and values.

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