Sunday, October 02, 2005

The Bali Bombings

"The police found a total of six legs and three heads but no middle bodies, and that's the strong sign of suicide bombers"*

lets do it.

The others nodded.

Arms adjusted slowly into velcro black vests strung with explosives. A penis, one of the younger ones, suddenly needed to go, and was let out into the garden. With a sad cold nose, it was let back in 15 seconds later. Toes gripped in dank cotton socks. Hands carefully pulled the big roomy winter jackets over the vests.

Noses sniffed. One mouth shaped words of a song in silence.

A finger was bit, a little too hard, taking away the hard skin, and opening out a tiny red well underneath. Proof of life. Bleeding, and stuffed into a pocket. Uncomplaining.

In the absence of hugs, faces were laid against faces-- In the dark, two mouths met, quick and dry, old greek priests after mass.

Heads nodded. Feet shuffled nervously, and were pushed forward by knees eager to end the waiting.

Lights passed by, cold air, cars as flashes of sound. Sounds of the dancing multitudes. Muffled bass, and more lights.

In three different streets, three different hands reached into three different pockets, and pressed down.

The heads looked around at each other, smiling and nodding over the screaming flying air and sparks that traced their arc.

Squinting, the eyes made out the waving legs below, who tangoed for three seconds before falling to the ground, exhausted.

Thump THump THUMP. They landed like potatoes in a field of cobbled stone.

I'd give it an 8.5, a mouth said.

The others nodded, rolled over, and then fell asleep.


*Raymond Bonner & June Perlez, quoting presidential spokesman Dino Djalal, Jakarta 2 Oct, 2005. For the NYTimes.