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Remembering 28 December

(in liturgies)

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Yesterday there was a lesser feast about

The slaughter of the innocents

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Frankly, I don’t know how to bring

It up, the murder of many children or

The killing of one child

Two years old or younger

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How does one speak to that?

How does one do it, in the first place?

The answer is, one doesn’t

But tells soldiers and slaves to do it

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The children are only

Targets, after all, unreal as people

If we never look at them

Or what we commanded

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Being Idumean,

Herod might even have considered this

An act of war against

An enemy Jewish people

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But we are right to say

That it was local genocide,

Even of boys the

Killing of a generation

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Foes from which there would be

No reprisal,

No fighting back would be

Expected

And thus a tactically successful

Maneuver and campaign

Designed by a crazy person who

Had the kind of power

Democracy should slay

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God would address the Herods

Later on:

You don’t really think

Herod and his would

Get away with murderous

Abrogations?

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We cannot count the children;

We do not count them now,

Though so many

Live inside danger

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They are not wood or cardboard—they

Are not shades behind

A chain-link fence or

A craftier, a solid-seeming barrier

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They starve, they bleed,

They cry as a divine signal

To the rest of us

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Listen to them, see to them—in this,

The parents are the world—and

Then we can rightly damn

All Herodian kings

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C L Couch

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Photo by insung yoon on Unsplash

Saemangeum-ro, Gunsan-si, South Korea

Solar Eclipse

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Matthew 2:16-18

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Acts 12:20-23

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According to documents and legends, Herod the Great and Herod Agrippa (grandson) both died lingering and painful deaths.

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