Of the nine men in the photograph, eight
are soldiers, their boots as yet unblemished.
One of them cuts the ninth man’s hair and beard.
Though his prayer shawl is trailing on the ground,
his waistcoat is firmly fastened, watch chain
still in place. He is standing stolidly
as in a queue. His eyes only we see.
He looks through the lens with – not fear – contempt.
The burning of children, of millions deceives.
‘If I forget thee, O Jerusalem…’
bootscontemptEuropefearJerusalemlensO Jerusalem…’prayer shawlqueuestolidlyunblemishedwatch chain‘If I forget thee