Two of my poems have been published this month (July 2009) by ‘The Shop’ magazine, edited by John and Hilary Wakeman, based in Schull, Co.Cork. One of the poems (‘Im Sorry for the Grunts Get Killed’: included in the ‘My Poetry’ page on this blog) arose from my feelings about the Iraq war waged by George W.Bush and Tony Blair on the false premise that Saddam Hussein had ‘weapons of mass destruction’. Unlike some other poems I wrote on this subject, where I focused on the catastrophic effect of the war on the native population, this one laments the fate of young Americans sent out to die for… well, for what, exactly? Sometimes in the reading of these poems in various locations I have been accused of anti-American bias. This poem shows, I believe, that I am only ‘anti’ human suffering, particularly when the causes of such sufferings are based on lies. I have no doubt that the US army includes its share of scoundrels and rogues (remember Abu Graib Prison?) but it must also include some fine young men and women who loved their country enough to lead them to trust their President. The other poem, ‘Little Boy and Tricycle’ (included in the ‘My Poetry’ page on this blog) concerns another war, in which the atom bomb was dropped (twice) for the first time. ‘Little Boy’ was the code name given to the bomb dropped on Hiroshima and my poem is based on an exhibit in the Peace Meamorial Museum there.