Hatred

See how efficient it still is,
how it keeps itself in shape—
our century's hatred.
How easily it vaults the tallest obstacles.
How rapidly it pounces, tracks us down.

It's not like other feelings.
At once both older and younger.
It gives birth itself to the reasons
that give it life.
When it sleeps, it's never eternal rest.
And sleeplessness won't sap its strength; it feeds it.


One religion or another -
whatever gets it ready, in position.
One fatherland or another -
whatever helps it get a running start.
Justice also works well at the outset
until hate gets its own momentum going.
Hatred. Hatred.
Its face twisted in a grimace
of erotic ecstasy…

Hatred is a master of contrast-
between explosions and dead quiet,
red blood and white snow.
Above all, it never tires
of its leitmotif - the impeccable executioner
towering over its soiled victim.

It's always ready for new challenges.
If it has to wait awhile, it will.
They say it's blind. Blind?
It has a sniper's keen sight
and gazes unflinchingly at the future
as only it can.

by Wislawa Szymborska

Comments (37)

Dear Romeo, beautiful poetry; your journey was for us too; to the sea with me. now I will continue to travel and come to my little Albania on the Adriatic coast of Italy and the Vatican where you will find the best hospitality in the world... congrats poet by dr riza
wow! what a journey! you are a born philosopher
I love the way you have given an account of your journey to the major tourist destinations of the world and that too without leaving your living room in New York. You have made it look like real and enviable. Thanks for your wonderful poetic skill, Romeo Della. Carrying in my luggage / Only my mind and heart... / Realizing I was still in New York, Since I never really left,
Born! On a journey; the journey of life. Nice work.
Brother! You are most welcome to India the land of spiritualism. I am planning for the same journey. Regards.a.
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