A Poetry Sporadical of Repeating Forms

Suicide Bomber Villanelle

by Paul Hostovsky

A suicide bomber isn’t born a suicide bomber.
He wasn’t a suicide bomber in elementary school
where he drew a spiky yellow exploding sun

above a little town between two green hills
and gave it to the teacher. And the teacher smiled.
On the day the suicide bomber was born

his father danced through the market from stall
to stall, singing, laughing, shouting the news
until the spiky yellow exploding sun went down

over the little town. And by then all the people
in the houses huddled between two green hills
had heard of the birth of the suicide bomber

who wasn’t a suicide bomber at all, at all.
He was never in his life what you would call
a suicide bomber. He was his father’s son

until that day in the market, the people and animals
splattering like so many fruits and vegetables
That was the day the suicide bomber was born.
An exploding sun. Like millions of exploding suns.

Paul Hostovsky has been featured on Poetry Daily, Verse Daily, Best of the Net, and The Writer’s Almanac. He has two full-length poetry collections, Bending the Notes (2008), and Dear Truth (2009), both from Main Street Rag. Visit his website.


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