On the murder of 14 residents of the City of San Bernardino in California celebrating Christmas – by Islamic terrorists on Saint Bibiana’s Feast day – December 2, 2015.
Coalescing – along a black, tired and cruel–
–trajectory – till all the bullets ring blood raw
Hollow, hopelessly bleakly and darkly dreadful
Like a bestial brutal barbaric foul falling–
–of a beautiful beatific friendly tree
A shadow’s shame cast upon the eyes and the ears
A ringing of the Mission Bells of doom, of death.
Isaac Amanios – guide him home Saint Bibiana
Damian Meins – let Saint Bibiana guide him homeward
Nicholas Thalasinos – guide him Bibiana
Bennetta Betbadal – guide her Saint Bibiana
Yvette Velasco – guide her home Saint Bibiana.
And then the ballet macabre of bullets came – through–
–the deepest divided vicious void of distance
To land at the feet of my own Los Angeles
At the soft sandaled feet of my home, my own hearth
In the San Bernardino vale, in the nowhere–
–of safety and quiet – the world comes crashing down–
–on all of us, like bricks fall during an earthquake.
Sierra Clayborn – may Saint Bibiana guide her home
Aurora Godoy – guide her home Saint Bibiana
Harry Bowman – may Saint Bibiana guide him home
Juan Espinoza – guide him home Saint Bibiana.
It takes days to grind to a stop on our freeway
The speed of life prevents any real assessment
Where is Syria and where is the Inland Empire?
For can two spots be more distant on this, our Earth?
Do I weep? Do I wail? Do I grieve? But then what?
Do I direct my just anger at a black flag?
Why have you come into my zone of oblivion?
Shannon Johnson – may Saint Bibiana guide him home
Larry Kaufman – may Saint Bibiana guide him home
Robert Adams – may Saint Bibiana guide him home
Michael Wetzel – may Saint Bibiana guide him home
Tin Nguyen – let Saint Bibiana guide her homeward.
Do you think you will break us? Kill us? Frighten us?
You are an embarrassment to the human race
You – cockroaches of that black flag of trite scribbles
And like petty insects with a deadly venom–
–we will fumigate the earth and excise you all
We will stomp your self-righteous filth out, one by one–
–with our soft feet clad in American combat boots.
* * *
So that the name of the murderers may live in infamy, they were husband Sayed Farook and his wife Tashfeen Malik.
“I wish to forcefully reaffirm that the path of violence and hate can never solve the problems of humanity! To use the name of God to justify this path is blasphemy.”
– Pope Francis