The room has been turned inside out

As if all set for a well-made play.

But this is a scene from Amatrice,

Venerable town unmade into rivers of rubble.


Only a handful of party animals

Heard the ‘evil murmur of moving walls’.

Most residents were asleep in their beds

Until the beds rose up and cast them out into chaos.


Things we had thought…that ought to stay

Put, striking out on their own behalf

Implacable as toys turning murderous at midnight.

But must we resort to fables and nursery tales?


Or shall I compare thee to the movement of migrants,

Relentless as dust, or the Euro-Border-Crats

Careless of casualties, dismissing fatalities,

Tossing back refugees like so many sticks of furniture?