(Bardo Museum, Tunis, 18 March 2015)
It was a bit steep,
as you discovered when
the guns began their guided tour.
(In Parliament, hearing the shots,
the legislators scurried away with their outrage).
Shell casings bounce across the mosaics.
What older assassins might have left their work
on these tiles,
some petty Caesar’s blood?
And this was Carthage, too,
until the Romans posted it with curses
that have yet to be lifted.
The story of the salted ground was a lie.
In other galleries, other cities,
the statues have been erased into
what they were
before there were gods.
Here, when you died,
the statues vanished.
You were the last to see them
free of the footnote
of your murders.
Everyone who comes
will think of you.
This is where it happened, they will say.
If they come.
– Stephen Vincent Kobasa