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Anti-Semitism is the demagogue’s

canard,  the resort of the populist,

the calculating racist’s dog whistle,

the opportunist’s bigotry, hatred of,

and prejudice against, Jewish people.


When Alfred Dreyfus was humiliated

on the Champs de Mars there were three hundred

Jewish officers in the French Army,

ten of them generals. The real spy,

Major Esterhazy, with official

connivance, died in his bed as Count

de Voilement at ‘Holmleigh’, 21

Milton Road, Harpenden, Hertfordshire,


Eventually exonerated,

after two trials and Devil’s Island,

Colonel Dreyfus served on the Western Front,

as did his son, Pierre. His granddaughter,

Madeleine, a Red Cross social worker,

frontline member of the French Resistance,

arrested by the French police, held

briefly by the SS at Drancy,

was murdered at Auschwitz.





© Copyright David Selzer
2 Responses
  • Keith Johnson
    December 27, 2020

    You seem to be chasing me around with your poetical geography! I used to have a house on Shakespeare Road, Harpenden (1975-79) – just off Milton Road.

    [On houses: “Still paying, still to owe. Eternal woe! ” JM.]

  • David Selzer
    December 28, 2020

    Ah, if only I’d known, Keith!

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