Nanjing, 1937.1

300,000 dead.
We do not speak of them.
Child’s playtime. Race to the finish.
Kill and count! Kill and count!
A coin fell on heads; heads fell on ground—
There is no luck in hell.
Dignity stripped, humanity raped:
the laughter echoed through the hills.
The heavens had been raining blood.
My face, their face: our face.
We are the wrong side of the moon.

1. In 1937, the Japanese military invaded the Chinese capital of Nanjing (also referred to as Nanking). The capital had been abandoned by the Chinese military, leaving primarily civilians to welcome the Japanese forces. The Japanese tortured, brutally raped, and murdered a large amount of the remaining population. The massacre, known today as the Rape of Nanjing, consisted of killing games—one described here where the Japanese soldiers lined up the Chinese and raced to see who could decapitate the most Chinese in the quickest amount of time. Information from this piece is drawn from The Rape of Nanking by Iris Chang.

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Nanjing, 1937.1

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