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Elegy for a Posthumous Captain (for Assaf Ramon)
by Brandon Marlon
How bitterly Israel’s heroes are felled and fallen!
Like sovereign Saul and loyal Jonathan
Projected in the air above Bet She’an
Dynastic champions are again claimed by greedy skies
How bereft is the Hebrew tribe of its defenders!
When its finest are tragically short-lived
Like the sages of old in Latin times
Spared the horrors still to come
How dark is this hour among Jacob’s tents!
We are all tempted to out-weep our mother Rachel
Yet somehow the anguish is utterly too much
Piercing the heart like an F-16 through the sound barrier
How much ash must be doused upon Israel’s head?
How deep should the gash in the garment be?
Woe to the nation losing father and son…
…from the heights of Gilboa to the hills of Hebron!
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