Poem for Sarajevo

A segment of the destroyed bobsled track used for the 1984 Winter Olympic Games. Mt. Trebević, overlooking Sarajevo. Photograph by the author.

Poem for Sarajevo

These are Olympic ruins,
Hallucinating force:
Muscle, nerve, steel, and ice
Exploding, roaring above Sarajevo

Past yearning spectators,
Native and foreign,
Who spurned distance, needing
No translation for ecstasy.

Now useless permanence,
Intimacy’s stripped, severed spine
Unmooring, firing pain
Through whoever will come.

You say: enough of the shadows,
The canvas of exile.
Life is waiting, steep, sun-drenched,
The landmines mostly cleared.

Tom Simpson, July 2012

About Tom Simpson

Tom Simpson teaches religion, ethics, philosophy, and human rights at Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, NH. He is the author of *American Universities and the Birth of Modern Mormonism, 1867-1940* (University of North Carolina Press, 2016) and nonfiction essays about Bosnia for the Canadian literary magazine *Numero Cinq*. Born in 1975 in Olean, NY, he earned the Ph.D. in religious studies from the University of Virginia, where he specialized in American religious history. He writes, teaches, and lectures about religion in America, popular culture, Mormonism, and Bosnia. He lives in Exeter with his partner, Alexis Simpson, and their two children.
This entry was posted in Aesthetics, Architecture, Art, Autobiography / Memoir, Bosnia, Ethics, Poetry, Religion and Spirituality, Social Justice, Sports, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to Poem for Sarajevo

  1. aidaweb101 says:

    Beautiful poem!Thanks for sharing!
    Cheers:)

  2. Lovely poem! Best wishes & have a great weekend! 🙂

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