Goebbels in the Underworld with All His Pretty Ones

by Gary Hardaway

The universe extracts no retribution.
It annihilates without a thought
of evil/good, sin/virtue. Human need
for righteous vengeance manufactured Hell
and all the sorrowful and eternal
underworlds only imaginations can map.

No Satanic bosom greeted Goebbels
and the family when the dream
(his dream) of a blond Reich
dismembered itself inside the bunker—
the small, impermanent underworld
where suffering was brief.

One may take a punitive solace
knowing he could see and hear
the kinder shudder, gasp, and hiss their
final almond-scented breaths as much-fucked
Magda whimpered and collapsed. In this
one has at least imagined justice.