Stanza 146


Now as the play is drawing to a close
An interruption by more modern foes
Occurred. An armored car with eight-wheel drive
Whose turret held a chain gun twenty-five
Mike mike and guns of lower caliber,
Approached the square, because the officer
Did not take notice when he should have turned.
But once they had arrived he was concerned.
The man had orders that this holiday
United States Marines should stay away
From all civilians in the area,
As they are celebrating Ashura
And will resent intrusion horribly.
And Zainab's sermon sounds defiantly
As if she stands before the tyrant's throne,
And all the listeners begin to stone
The men who had assumed the caliph's role.
In anger, people mount the car and pull
The gunner from the turret's lofty seat
And beat him for his arrogant conceit.