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"8888" by Yuzana Khin


by Yuzana Khin
and Wrightson Tongue

How can I forget
the eighth of August,
nineteen eighty-eight...
the eighth of August....

I still remember everything:
   downtown Rangoon where the people
     all came to demonstrate and sing,
					students and lawyers, monks and workers
		     standing side by side.
How their cries for freedom
   reached the sky!

Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed... saw it all.

Then the soldiers came,
   gun barrels flashing;
orders to disperse.
Bullhorns were clashing:
   "Come join us!" all the people cried.
			"This demonstration is illegal!"
	    the officers replied.
			"There is no law but freedom now!"
     a thousand voices said.
   "Shall we not follow
     where the truth has led?"

Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed saw it all.

But, in the midnight's darkest moment,
the order was passed down.
The soldiers fired into the crowd
'till the screaming of the wounded 
   was the only sound...
     ...and the tanks were coming!

Blood was everywhere and the
dead and dying.
I was running through the night and my
heart was crying:
   "How could this horror happen here?"
Whose bloody hand destroyed the peace
   that Burma held so dear?
Is it for nothing thousands died
   and millions cry in pain?
Will freedom ever reunite
   Myanmar again?

Buddha, Jesus, Mohammed saw it all....

Wrightson Tongue