A Letter Home

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Tell me about brotherhood,

my brother.

Send despatches: crisp, precise details.

Spare nothing.

In this part of the world

I hear only gossip,

swirling like murderous mist

from old hags and toothless men

to amuse themselves and

frighten children.

In this part of the world

the talk is of the weather

and the weather in this part

of the world cannot be trusted.

Here, the stars cling to the earth

like a desperate obsession

the monstrous blackness too much for them.

People march in their weak light.

I have a traitor’s heart

and sing:

A minute’s silence for the dead

stills the violence, makes the bed.

Mr Agio feigns death to avoid

a sacrificial life, and in the long

dying, cries out:

my brother, tell me about brotherhood.

Warwick McFadyen

(From The Life and Times of Mr Agio)

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