The Wounds of Exile

She was bleeding before

I cut myself away.

My leaving merely

bloomed new wounds

in the crimson of roses.


Their perfume haunted

the garden behind our home

where now the barrel bombs

blossom from

pregnant heaven.


I fled the ceaseless

hemorrhage, but something

still pulses my heart

with an unhealing wound

weeping of mother.


I hold in my hands this image

of an unhealing scab—

a home of crumbled concrete.

The lips of my wound

cry mute to passersby.


Around me they walk

a confidence of home,

certain their streets

will not rise up

against them.


They stare at the cavity

I have become, a space

I hoped would grow

peace in this rich

but alien soil.


David Anthony Sam is the grandson of Polish and Syrian immigrants. He has written poetry for over 40 years and has two collections, including Memories in Clay, Dreams of Wolves (2014). He lives in Virginia USA with his wife and life partner, Linda, and currently serves as president of Germanna Community College.

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