Paul Marion: New Poem, Ukraine War

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Broken Through


The world has a compound fracture.

We are a body in pain.

Bone broken through skin in a vital part.

My Boy Scout Handbook described first aid for this wound.

End of a snapped white bone, ragged as a snapped pine branch.

Bloody punctured flesh, the victim in shock, semi-conscious.


Rub the arms and legs towards the body core.

Warm with a blanket, offer water, hot tea.

An extreme injury a scout hopes not to see.

The Handbook shows what to do:

Splint and bandage, the picked-up wood and torn-off shirtsleeve,

First response,




—Paul Marion, March 8, 2022

One Response to Paul Marion: New Poem, Ukraine War

  1. David Daniel says:

    In a 24-hour news-surround, the small things get buried, lost. The fogs of war numb us. This poem is a welcome momentary stay against confusion, to borrow Frost’s phrase. The reference to the Boy Scout Handbook is quaint–and reassuring. The things we must do to try to give aid, to promote the longed-for healing. A blanket. Tea. Step by step. A poem for our time. The fact that it’s a sonnet slips past scarcely noticed.