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A Voice in the Wilderness

As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there's a twilight where everything remains seemingly unchanged, and it is in such twilight that we must be aware of change in the air, however slight, lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness. -- William O. Douglas

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Eye to eye, a Palestinian poem

Eye to eye, a Palestinian poem
By Gihad Ali

Look into my eyes
And tell me what you see.
You don't see a damn thing,
Because you can't possibly relate to me.

Blinded by our differences
My life makes no sense to you.
I'm the persecuted Palestinian.
You're the Red, White and Blue.

Each day you wake in tranquility,
No fears to cross your eyes.
Each day I wake in gratitude,
Thanking God He let me rise.

You worry about your education
And the bills you have to pay.
I worry about my vulnerable life
And if I'll survive another day.

Your biggest fear is getting that ticket
As you cruise your Cadillac.
My fear is the tank that left
Will turn around to come back.

Do you realise
The tax you pay
Fuels the trauma
Of my every living day?

Bulldozers and tanks,
Gases and guns,
Bombs that fall outside my door,
Are due to US funds.

Do you know the truth
Of where your money goes?
Media deceiving you?
The truth that no one knows.

You blame me for rejecting
Zionist ways.
Terrorised in my own land
And I'm the terrorist?
You think you know all about terrorism
But you don't know it the way I do,
So let me define the term for you,
And teach you what you thought you knew.

I've known terror for quite some time,
Fifty-five years and more.
It's the fruitless garden uprooted in my yard.
It's the bulldozer outside my door.

Terrorism breathes the air I breathe.
It's the checkpoint on my way to school.
It's the curfew that jails me in my home,
And the penalties of breaking the curfew rule.

Terrorism is the robbery of my land,
And the torture of my mother,
The imprisonment of my father,
The bullet in my baby brother.

So, don't tell me you know about
The things I feel and see.
I'm terrorised in my own land
And the blame is put on me.

But I will not rest, I shall never settle
For the injustice my people endure.
Palestine is our land and there we'll remain
Until the day our homeland is secure.

If that day shall never come,
Never will we see a day of peace.
I will not be thrown from my own home,
Nor will my fight for justice cease.

And if I'm killed, it will be in Falasteen.
It's written on my every breath.
So in your own patriotic words,
Give me liberty or give me death.

From Green Left Weekly, October 13, 2004.

4 Comments:

At Thu Jul 28, 10:37:00 AM MDT, Blogger Liquidplastic said...

You have the courage to post, day after day, what many in this land of the free is afraid to say. Those of us that have eyes to see, ears to hear ... have no power to make changes, because of such things as ... corrupt politicians, and an unjust "justice system. No matter how we vote, how we line up at the polls, our votes are still not counted. Most of the time our votes are manipulated by computer systems. If the truth be told, we are all slaves that are sold to keep the "haves and have more" in undeserved comfort. Thank you for at least posting the truth. I for one just don't know what to do to make it better. I know it's possible, I just don't know how to bring it about. Of course, being a brown-skined person, no one gives a shit what I think, unless I am kissing the so called "white man" ass by agreeing with what they do, here and all over the world, in the name of what they call democracy. What a bunch of crap! Like the great late Fannie Lou Hamer, "I am sick and tired of being sick and tired"!

Thank you for posting this poem, for indeed ... it's not hard to see myself in it, nor is it hard to see the truth of what the poet is saying.

 
At Thu Jul 28, 11:12:00 PM MDT, Blogger The Voice said...

liquidplastic,

I am going to post something for you to think about in the next post.

I appreciate your dropping by and look forward to chatting with you more in the future. I agree there is a disproportionate distribution of wealth not only in the World but, in the US as well. Unfortunately, in the US mist people think that they have that once in a lifetime opportunity to make it big and so there is no collective unrest at the way our system works. The results are tragic; 13 million kids will go to bed without enough to eat in America tonight. According to UNICEF, 30 million kids (you read it right) will die today and they die at that rate every day of the year.

That has to do with plain old selfishness and yes, bigotry of sorts. Some bigotry is race related and some is class related - that is why I used the terms 'haves' and 'have-nots.' To my way of thinking we can address the issues by at least being cognizant that they exist. If the only thing we do in a day is to be kind to another person then we are changing the world. Never forget that. Most importantly, never stop talking - never.

Beyond that, never lose your hope in Humanity; Cardinal Newman said, a long time ago, 'It is better to treat people like what they are capable of rather than like what they are.' I agree with that logic. Now don't get me wrong, some people need chiding to get their attention - it does not mean I hate or even despise them. I believe it is possible to love the sinner and still hate the sin.

Whenever my kids did something wrong when they were growing up, one of their chief concerns was whether I 'hated' them or not. I always took great pains to assure them that despite their chiding or even punishment, that I still loved them. That proved to be critically important for their development. I see my daughter now does the same with her son when he does something wrong. Doing so instills a strong sense of right and wrong and moreover it also instills a sense of self-worth. The two go hand in hand.

Thank you so much for posting and I do feel your pain - I trust that you share my belief that God does not make junk and that we are all his children. He loves us equally and it is therefore incumbent upon each of us to be good - in other words, to be worthy of God = 'good.' Being good includes self-forgiveness as well as forgiveness of others. Understanding is the key

We all fall down but we must all get up. We must also be able to forgive ourselves and those who sin against us otherwise, if we cannot forgive then we ought never to expect to be forgiven.

Be safe,
J

 
At Fri Jul 29, 06:59:00 AM MDT, Blogger Liquidplastic said...

With a respond like this one, with such clear vision, all I can say is thank you! For you seem to reach within me and place my thoughts right before my eyes.

LP

 
At Fri Jul 29, 08:40:00 PM MDT, Blogger Tazeen Mohsin said...

Its the kind that actually sends shiver down ur spine to know that this is reality.

 

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