First They Came For: Modern Day, a Poem by Danielle Resh

Updated: Feb 1


I.

At a Connecticut kindergarten,

a man severs 26 futures.

Tiny bodies lay lifeless

beside the daisies,

seeds uprooted.


Good thing I already know how to read.



II.

At a Florida high school,

a shooter scrawls swastikas

on ammunition magazines

before shattering seventeen souls,

scarring an entire generation

of seventeen-year-olds.


Good thing I already got my GED.



III.

At two New Zealand mosques,

a white supremacist slaughters

fifty-one worshippers

as they pray,

submitting to Allah,

and unwittingly,

to their graves.


Good thing I’m not Muslim.



IV.

At a Pittsburgh synagogue,

an anti-Semite with an assault rifle

massacres a minyan plus one,

transforming the day of rest

into one of mourning.


Good thing I no longer pray.



V.

At the grocery store,

a man fires a bullet

into his coworker’s car,

window shattered

where the bullet scattered,

a bag of peaches

in the victim’s quickly releasing grasp.


Good thing I don’t need any more food,

could lose some weight anyway.



VI.

At that house across the cul-de-sac,

a husband murders his wife point-blank

after she just won’t stop nagging him;

she crumples like paper, stained

across his living room floor.


Good thing I live across the street.



VII.

And now,

I hear a knock at the door,

the click of a rifle loading—

Maybe if I remain silent

inside this room,

damp from my fear

and dark like a womb,


They won’t be able to find me.



 

Danielle Resh is an avid writer, creative writing teacher, and personal historian based in Houston, Texas. Her poetry has been published in the Sunlight Press, Hevria Magazine, the Jewish Literary Journal, and Poetica’s 2019 Mizmor Anthology. In addition to writing poetry, she is also currently seeking publication for her magical realism novel about a small Jewish town in 1800s Poland whose Torah begins miraculously growing. Her manuscript was recognized as the winning historical fiction manuscript of the Writers’ League of Texas’ 2020 Manuscript Contest and as a finalist in the science fiction/fantasy category. More information about her work can be found at https://www.danielleresh.com/.