Empire of Shadows

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                              Empire of Shadows

                   When the great hammer blow descended

                   it came suddenly, right out of the blue,

                   unexpected, out of a clear blue sky.

                   On the ground, moments before the blast,

                   it was a calm, sunny, Monday morning.

 

                   Those closest to the blast died instantly,

                   their bodies turned to crisp black charcoal.

                   Nearby birds burst into flames in mid-air,

                   and combustible materials like

                   paper, or skin, ignited instantly _

                   as far away as 6,000 feet from

                   the epicentre, or ground zero.

                   The white light acted as a huge flashbulb

                   burning the dark patterns of clothing on

                   skin and shadows of bodies onto walls.

 

                   Survivors outdoors close to the blast

                   described a literally blinding light,

                   combined with an enormous wave of heat.

 

                   The city was hidden by that awful

                   cloud … boiling up, mushrooming, terrible.

 

                   Sixty years after that cataclysm

                   someone in power wrote the following:

                   The war on terror involves enemies

                   hidden among us who hate our values,

                   who will use any weapons against us …

                   in the age of post-modern irony.

                                 Hugh McFadden

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About the Author: Hugh McFadden

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