Hiroshima remembered

I am the Reverend Kiyoshi Tanimoto
A graduate of Emory College, Atlanta,
Pastor of the Methodist Church of Hiroshima
I was in a western suburb when the bomb struck
Like a sheet of sunlight.
Fearing for my wife and family
I ran back into the city
Where I saw hundreds and hundreds fleeing
Every one of them hurt in some way.
The eyebrows of some were burned off
Skin hung from their faces and hands
Some were vomiting as they walked
On some naked bodies the burns had made patterns
Of the shapes of flowers transferred
From their kimonos to human skin.
Almost all had their heads bowed
Looked straight ahead, were silent
And showed no expression whatever.
Under many houses I heard trapped people screaming
Crying for help but there were none to help
And the fire was coming.
I came to a young woman holding her dead baby
Who pleaded with me to find her husband
So he could see the baby one last time.
There was nothing I could do but humor her.
By accident I ran into my own wife
Both she and our child were alive and well.
For days I carried water and food to the wounded and the dying.
I apologized to them: “Forgive me,” I said, “for not sharing your burden.”
I am the Reverend Kiyoshi Tanimoto
Pastor of the Methodist Church of Hiroshima
I was in a western suburb when the bomb struck
Like a sheet of sunlight.#
(The above is based on the book “Hiroshima” by John Hersey. The poem is on more than 40 websites globally. Sherwood Ross, a Miami-based poet, worked as a reporter for the Chicago Daily News, as a wire service correspondent for two prominent wire services, and holds an award for reporting from AFTRA. Ross is 2013 first-place winner of the Florida Poet’s Association in the category of blank verse and 2014 winner of two first prizes in that competition. The above poem also won honors in the State competition last year. There is no charge for publishing this poem. Reach him at sherwoodross10@gmail.com)

Hiroshima atomic bomb survivor: ‘Boom. Boom. Gone. All gone.’

Haruko Lewis, now 88, takes just seven words to describe the atomic bomb that dropped on her hometown of Hiroshima, Japan, when she was 18: “Boom-boom-pop. Houses? Bah, bah. Gone. Gone.”

A stroke last year ago has forced Haruko to talk in single words. But those rocky syllables outline the jagged effects of the nuclear fission that radiated from the collision of two chunks of enriched uranium in the heart of Little Boy, the first atomic bomb unleashed on the world.

“Houses, bah, bah, bah,” Haruko repeats, motioning with her good arm to show how shock waves flattened houses one by one by one. She glances at her son, James, nodding for confirmation from the serenity of their home in Harvest, Ala.

“Hiroshima. So beautiful. All gone. Gone. Dead.”



5 Responses to “Hiroshima remembered”

  1. ian says:

    The war was won, but America had funded the Manhattan project so it had to be used. The USAF had been daylight Japanese civilian populations with impunity for weeks but were told to leave Hiroshima and Nagasaki untouched. Whether to test the bombs or demonstrate them to the world, the perps are inhuman arseholes.
    I’ve had my computer invaded today, personal violation. I’m not having a good day, but these poor sods. We’re still ruled by the bastards that did this.

  2. ian says:

    I’ve no illusions that Japanese are super different to our brave boys, eg the rape of Nanking, but I believe that because they voted against Israel in the UN, that they were targeted again at Fukushima. I’m not into shapeshifters, but Ibelieve evil bastards are in control of governments

  3. moi says:

    nagasaki and hiroshima the 2 most christian cities in the whole of asia 1 of the cities also had asias largest christian church all just a coincidence of course as for nuclear weapons a sham a fraud a cursory googke search is all it takes to know this

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