Two poems from ‘Sparrow’

That’s Ervin, second from the right

Old Mrs Szabo

Old Mrs Szabo
used to give me cakes
when I was a child
and here she was
on Szegedi Utca
tearing the skin
from the corpse
of a KGB man
with her fingernails.

The White Coat

When the soldiers came to the hospital
I had just carried an injured man in.
The doctor put a white coat on me.
‘See to this equipment, Doctor,’ he said.

So I was pretending to adjust
a hanging bag of blood
with its little knobs and tubes
when the soldiers passed me by
without seeing my freedom fighter’s boots.


From: Sparrow: Poems of a Refugee by Belinda Broughton

So different aren’t they, these two poems: revenge, kindness, fear, bravery — humanity. They are from during the 1956 Hungarian Uprising but he even manages to tell some funny stories about that time.


Belinda Broughton: Sparrow, Poems of a RefugeeSparrow: Poems of a Refugee is available from:
Ginninderra Press
FishPond (Free shipping in Oz)
Book Depository (Free shipping outside OZ)

I can sell the book for $22.50 AUD plus postage ($2.50 in Australia). I make more $ that way!

3 thoughts on “Two poems from ‘Sparrow’

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