Posted by: John Looker | 22 March, 2016

Unholy Fools

they hope to build the walls of heaven
with skulls;
they think by filling the halls of paradise
with screaming
they will be pleasing the ears of God;
in slaughtering others
they grant themselves the title ‘martyr’.

And if they hear the laughter
they would not know
how it ascends
from far,
far be-

© John Looker 2016

I have published this before under the title ‘Again’ but, with the murderous attacks at the airport and metro in Brussels today, I’ve chosen a less dispassionate title.


  1. totally agree with you – thanks John

    Liked by 2 people

  2. A terrible, depressing day, John. I wonder how humans dance themselves into believing God is interested primarily in the screams of people? This is, as usual, highly effective poetry. The laughter today must be thunderous from below.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. From the merest bits of order — punctuation marks — to large principles of rhetoric this fascinating poem expresses our rage for order in the deepest chaos we know. It goes the distance as a creative response to nihilism.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Powerful!

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thanks Kalila. I would recommend others to read your poem ‘The end of the world’


  5. Timely

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Sadly true John

    Sent from my iPhone


    Liked by 2 people

  7. It’s hard to know what to say or write when these events happen. You have succeeded very well indeed. Thanks for posting this poem.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I have just caught up with this, John, so sorry for the lateness of the comment. I really liked this one, though ‘like’ sounds an inadequate word given the context. The laughter coming from below is a truly haunting image… It had me thinking of C.S. Lewis for some reason, I can’t say why exactly. It expresses perfectly the victory of evil, when people who are doing something so wicked believe themselves to be doing something good.


    • I certainly read quite a bit pf C.S.Lewis as a boy, Andy. It must have stuck as I recognise the allusion. Thank you for your comment and I’m glad that you read this with approval.


  9. This is wonderfully written. Ethel. A creative image!


    • Thanks Ethel – I was never sure about how this one would be received.


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