Hour before the Dawn

[ Ed. note – Another poem by Palestinian poet Nahida Izzat. Nahida is a Muslim. As I read her poem, however, it brings to mind for me, strangely perhaps, the following spoken by Jesus after the resurrection: “And lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” The words are from the very last line, in the final verse, in the final chapter, of the Gospel of Matthew.

Indeed, we seem to be fast approaching the end of an age. As Nahida puts it, “Earth is throbbing/The avalanche is fast approaching.” The poem also contains suggestions of a soul preparing to make the journey from life into the afterlife: “Raise your gaze up to the sky/Note the signs to your dwelling place.” Yet worth remembering is that in the post-apocalyptic age to come, heaven and earth will merge. This is the case in Christian theology, at any rate, and I suspect Islam probably has its parallel.

In any event, when I read poetry like this I tend to become convinced that it is the Palestinians (and certainly not the Khazars!!! ) who are the true descendants of the earliest followers of Jesus. Christians should consider that we potentially have far more in common with Muslims than we do with Jews. ]

 

Hour before the Dawn

* * *

Earth is throbbing in curious anticipation

The avalanche is fast approaching

People dazed in deep sleep

Some eyes are peeled as if they know

* * *
* * *

Time to retreat, weary soul

Time to retreat

Rest in a niche where Light descends

Hand it all over to the One Supreme

Carve a hole in your heart, braid your loved ones in

One by one

* * *

* * *

O soul

Put your temporary house in order

Clean up the mess before the storm

Pluck up the weeds and plow the soil

Scatter the seeds for those to come

Give it back better than you received

Stunning… Atrociously beautiful

Humbly put your head down and pray

A modest sign of ample gratitude

* * *

* * *

Raise your gaze up to the sky

Note the signs to your dwelling place

Adorn the garden of your home eternal

Let love flow free, let kindness prevail

Follow your soul, she knows the way

Let her guide you to your heavenly abode

Beneath the Throne of a Gracious Lord

Gaze in amazement at the glorious sight

Wither to nothingness before the Majesty

Splendour no eye had ever seen

* * *

Mahmoud Darwish and the Jews

August 9th marks the ninth anniversary of the death of the great Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish. Poems that eloquently capture the essence and spirit of the Palestinian struggle for independence–this is what Darwish gave to the world.

Born on March 13, 1941 in the village of Al-Birwa, Darwish published his first book of poetry at the age of 19. His home village, Al-Birwa, no longer exists, by the way. Located in western Galilee near the border with Lebanon, it was destroyed in 1948. Darwish was seven years old at the time. He and his family and other villagers were forced to flee. A kibbutz and the Jewish town of Ahihud occupy the land today.

A week ago I put up a post entitled Solzhenitsyn and the Jews, the purpose of which was to mark the ninth anniversary of the death of the famed Russian writer, Alexander Solzhenitsyn. The parallels between Solzhenitsyn and Darwish are striking. For one thing, both men died within a week of each other–Solzhenitsyn on August 3, 2008, and Darwish on August 9, 2008. Both of course were also great writers. But perhaps most striking of all is both spent a major portion of their lives living under a brutal system of government imposed by Jews–and in both cases the experience powerfully shaped their writing.

Here is what I wrote in my article on Solzhenitsyn:

The Soviet Union, at least in its earlier years, seems very much to have been an example of Jewish power gone berserk.

The same of course can be said of Israel.

You can kind of sense that power gone berserk in what follows. It’s one of Darwish’s most famous poems–“I Come from There.”

I Come From There

I come from there and I have memories
Born as mortals are, I have a mother
And a house with many windows,
I have brothers, friends,
And a prison cell with a cold window.
Mine is the wave, snatched by sea-gulls,
I have my own view,
And an extra blade of grass.
Mine is the moon at the far edge of the words,
And the bounty of birds,
And the immortal olive tree.
I walked this land before the swords
Turned its living body into a laden table.
I come from there. I render the sky unto her mother
When the sky weeps for her mother.
And I weep to make myself known
To a returning cloud.
I learnt all the words worthy of the court of blood
So that I could break the rule.
I learnt all the words and broke them up
To make a single word: Homeland…..

On June 8, 1987, Darwish published an essay entitled, “The Cruelest of Months.” The essay marked the twentieth anniversary of the 1967 war, a war in which Israel, in addition to bombing the USS Liberty, further extended its control over Palestinian land, capturing East Jerusalem and the West Bank.

In his essay, Darwish employs the rhetorical device of repetition, repeating the words “June is the cruelest of months,” throughout the piece. He may have intended it as a literary allusion to T.S. Eliot’s “The Wasteland,” whose  opening line consists of the immortal words, “April is the cruelest month.” At any rate, the piece jumps straight into the poet’s portrayal of June’s agony:

No one is safe from the pain of memories, or from psychological collapse. June is the cruelest of months. June is an abyss which tries to ascend from its own depths to improve the conditions within it. A strained hand is raised to prevent the wall from collapsing and a strained cry rings out: let whatever is collapsing collapse–let our internal pain complete its twentieth year. The passing of twenty years startles us as we ponder what time can and cannot do. Twenty years of pain that we try to forget, but which pursues us. Whoever was born then, in June, is now twenty years old–children familiar with rocks and small rockets, with prisons, children who have lived abnormal lives. We see to what extent we have been further scattered and to what extent the homeland has narrowed. Twenty seasons of burned wheat.

And as we bid the years farewell, the ideas of youth fade. They would have remained young if night had not been confounded with day. June is the cruelest of months. Because we are witnesses of the event. And turning back to that part of this age which has already ended, this age which defies proper description, does not enable us to escape the fever or to ascertain its origins: is it the past that has taken with it the memory of the defeat and gone away; or is it the present, incapable of separating itself from the spectacle of the defeat and its history so that the past remains capable of repeating itself as long as the reality of the defeat is present in the form of the occupation?

The line about night being “confounded” by day is perhaps the most powerful of all. In an obscene world of cruelty and madness, darkness is preferable to the light of day. Darkness at least brings us a sense of respite from the murderous depravities.

The essay also addresses Israel’s tiresome and incessant demands from one and all–including the very people it has displaced–for recognition of its “right to exist.” And there is also a backhanded slap at Arab governments which, in exchange for cordial relations with the Zionist state, have all but abandoned the Palestinian struggle (other than the payment of occasional lip service).

Here a June question arises: if the decision to make war was an Arab decision, why should the decision to make peace be based on a Palestinian agreement to absent himself? Here the Greek tragedy and the Shakespearean tragedy are completed: the Palestinian is expected to absent himself from his homeland, from his problem, from his case, and from himself. He is requested to appear on  stage only once. He who is absent is asked to appear to witness that he is absent, invisible; he is supposed to come only to recognize Israel’s existence, Israel which is present only on the condition that the Palestinian is absent. Then the Palestinian is supposed to disappear. He is also supposed to present himself before the Arab ruler to acknowledge that he does not represent himself, to admit that he is absent from the stage in the presence of the one who has requested him to attend once for the sake of permanent absence.

But Darwish foresaw, even then, way back in 1987, that the Palestinians were not going to give up, that the struggle for justice would go on:

We must realize again that June did not come from outside as much as it sprang from within. Is June still alive within us? We have witnessed twenty years of occupation. But also twenty years of steadfastness of a people surrounded and besieged by occupation. Twenty years of embers springing from the ashes. Twenty years of the crystallization of the Palestinian national identity. Twenty years of shaping the miracle.

That essay, as I say, was published in June of 1987. Six months later, in December of 1987, the first intifada broke out.

A tribute to Darwish has been published at the website Palestine Square. The article tells a little of his personal story and also provides links to a number of writings–these consist of Darwish’s own writings as well as articles that have been written about him. One of the articles linked to is a commentary Darwish himself wrote on the 9/11 attack. Here is a brief excerpt from it:

No cause, not even a just cause, can make legitimate the killing of innocent civilians, no matter how long the list of accusations and the register of grievances. Terror never paves the way to justice but leads down the shortest path to hell. We deplore this horrendous crime and condemn its planners and perpetrators with all the terms of revulsion and condemnation in our lexicon. We do this not only as our moral duty, but also in order to reassert our commitment to our own humanity and our faith in human values that do not differentiate between one people and another. Our sympathy with the victims and their families and with the American people in these trying times is thus an expression of our deep commitment to the unity of human destiny. For a victim is a victim, and terrorism is terrorism, here or there; it knows no boundaries nor nationalities and does not lack the rhetoric of killing.

A Palestinian girl lights candles in tribute to Darwish.

That article, condemning the horrendous attacks, was published in a Palestinian newspaper on September 17, 2001. As was the case with most people in the world at that time, it obviously had not occurred to Darwish that 9/11 may well have been a false flag, with Israel as the possible principle perpetrator. In any event, the marked sympathy he shows for Americans should be noted–it is a distinctly humanist perspective, coming from one of the leading intellectuals in Palestinian society, this despite America’s ongoing support for Israel.

In 2001, America truly had the sympathy of the entire world. We managed to squander it. Our response to 9/11 was to bomb and invade one country after another–in wars that were relentlessly advocated by Jewish neocons and the Zionist-owned media.

***

Remembering Mahmoud Darwish

Palestine Square

It is difficult to overstate the legacy of Mahmoud Darwish, Palestine’s iconic poet, whose passing on 9 August 2008 has left behind a literary treasure. His was a voice that touched every Palestinian, and with it, Darwish delivered the Palestinian experience to a global audience. His poems have been translated into more than 20 languages, and continue to ring true for many Palestinians who long to return home. Indeed, exile was the central thread of Darwish’s poetic journey. And, while exile is often regarded as a political reality, Darwish’s experience reveals a far broader concept. As he said in a 1996 landmark interview featured in this month’s Special Focus below, “Exile is a very broad concept and very relative. There is exile in society, exile in family, exile in love, exile within yourself.” It began with an exile from his natal village in the Galilee, where Darwish lived under military rule along with 150,000 other Palestinians after Israel’s establishment in 1948. Then, came Moscow, Paris, Cairo, Tunis, Beirut, Amman, and finally Ramallah, where he was buried. This fragmented living resonated with a broader Palestinian experience of displacement and dispersion.

Yet, for all his collective significance, Darwish was often reserved and his poetry was born from very personal experiences. For instance, he grew up convinced he was unloved by his family, especially his mother. But, when he was jailed in Israeli prison in 1956, he wrote “I Long For My Mother’s Bread,” which has become a Palestinian classic in the voice of Marcel Khalife.

“I wanted to atone for my feelings of guilt toward my mother for thinking she hated me—as a poem of national longing. I didn’t expect that millions would sing it,” Darwish said. Indeed, for countless Palestinians estranged from place and family, this particular poem was embraced as a national resistance poem, where the mother symbolizes Palestine.

Continued here

You can follow the link to access the full tribute to Darwish. At the bottom of the article you will find the links to the other articles. These include a link to the essay, “The Cruelest of Months.” Take note, however, that the articles are in PDF format and will only be available for the duration of the month of August. So if you wish to read them, do so now.

Bin Laden on the Head of a Pin

Posted on September 10, 2016

911warhysteria

[ Ed. note – This is my 9/11 poem. ]

Bin Laden on the Head of a Pin

Bin Laden on the head of a pin
Bin Laden in the sea
Bin Laden on the planet Mars
Bin bon appétit!

Bin Laden in the apple orchard
Takes a bite of a crisp, delicious, reality-is-whatever-we-say-it-is red apple,
Hums a song in his heart through the fervid fizz of his Khazarian memory
And tosses the half-eaten apple on the ground,
Leaves the orchard without a sound.

Bin Laden as a prom corsage
Where is the truth?
It lies in the attic.
Bin Laden as decoupage
Bin Laden in the piss-Christ glass
Bin Laden at the dancehall makes a pass
At a lovely girl whose name was Jill
He took her to the woods and cut her heart open with his sica blade
Gave his false flag a nice, smart wave
Left Jill’s body on the blood soaked ground
And returned to the lights of the dance hall—
Flashed his Mossad I.D. at Michael Chertoff,
Hopped on the next flight to Israel
And announced he’d only been there to document the event.

Bin Laden eating liver and grouse
Flosses with the tail of a mouse
Bin Laden has a golden rule:
To each West Bank Jew an Olympic pool!
Bin Laden on the head of a pin
Bin Laden’s second coming again and again.

Bin Laden put the nano-thermite explosives in place
To do a controlled demolition of America
From Maine to Hawaii
And when the explosives went off
America fell neatly into its own footprint,
And nobody recognized hell’s flashing lights
And nobody recognized the snake that bites
We all just sort of wondered where the time went.

Bin Laden peruses the market trends
Flying over Kansas with his Sayanim friends
Not worth bothering to make amends
Just another ho-hum day of decapitating goyim.
Bin Laden swipes his credit card
Rushes off to a Hollywood set—
O what a beautiful day!—
His eye captured by a shapely leotard
Films his next video for the CIA.

Bin Laden in the lion’s den
Now become the king of beasts
Bin Laden with his goyim slaves
Riding the crest of the perfect wave,
Dining at the think tank feast.
Bin Laden looking fit and tanned,
Ever the whiz-kid in demand.

Bin Laden perusing the market trends
Once again over Kansas with his Sayanim friends
Bin Laden laying down XYZ
In the studios at ABC.
And nobody recognized hell’s flashing lights
And nobody recognized the snake that bites.
And nobody recognized the snake that bites.

Bin Laden rising higher and higher
Tightrope walking on the telephone wires
The imperial Lord of holy rites
And nobody recognized the snake that bites
Bin Laden on the planet Mars
Bin Laden headed for the stars
Bin Laden will return some day
In another mask, another way.

Bin Laden on the head of a pin
Bin Laden in the sea
Bin Laden on planet Earth
Bin bon appétit!

And nobody recognized hell’s flashing lights
And nobody recognized the snake that bites.

By Richard Edmondson

(image: “Post 9/11 War Hysteria” by nine9nine9 )

Palestinian Poet Jailed for ‘Incitement’

tatour

I am younger than all of them.
Yet, by my griefs, I am older than the days—
a chill has fostered me, and taught me
of people’s cunning.
Treachery both orphaned and undressed me—
and my eyes were buried in agony

–Dareen Tatour

[ Ed. note – Dareen Tatour is a Palestinian poet who was arrested 7 months ago and charged with “incitement.” She is presently, by court order, in home detention and forced to wear an electronic cuff around her ankle, and it looks like she will remain interned in this manner for some time to come.

Below you will find an article about a court hearing on her case held Sunday in Nazareth–a hearing in which Tatour’s supporters were blocked from entering–and beneath that a translation of one of her poems into English, followed finally by a Haaretz article published a day ago. You can also go here to visit a Free Dareen Tatour Facebook page that has been set up.

Actually, I would say Israel has good reason to be worried about her. This lady is a talented poet. She may well be the next Mahmoud Darwish of Palestine. Perhaps the Huffington Post might publish an article explaining how artists and poets can get arrested and thrown in jail in the only democracy in the Middle East. I’m just kidding. I really don’t expect Huffington Post to do that.

Finally, it is of course worth commenting upon that Israeli Jews delight in the freedom to go marching down public streets chanting “death to Arabs,” or to stand in public holding signs aloft reading “kill them all”–and many in fact do such things without the slightest worry of being charged with “incitement.” ]

***

Nazareth vigil supporting poet Dareen Tatour and the court hides behind closed doors

By Free Haifa

It is almost 7 months since Dareen Tatour, a Palestinian poet from Al-Reineh (near Nazareth), fell into the black hole of persecution by Israel’s oppression apparatus. The case was rarely noticed before the first hearing of the court on April 13 (see reports in Arabic and Hebrew), when it was published that the main accusation against her is posting a poem on youtube and Facebook calling for resistance to the occupation. Apparently Israel expects all Palestinian poets to devote their poems to pour praise and show love for their torturers.

The new “Free Dareen Tatour” Facebook page called for a vigil in front of the Nazareth court before the second hearing of the prosecution witnesses today, May 8 2016. By 12:00, the designated time, there was already a dedicated group of activists waiting in the sun in front of the court building. They received gleefully Dareen that had to travel a hundred kilometers from her exile and home-detention in a suburb of Tel Aviv. Many of the activists (and some of her family members) didn’t see Dareen since her detention, and it was a very warm meeting.

There were signs in Arabic, Hebrew and English, all calling for the freedom of Dareen Tatour, freedom to Palestinian arts, free speech and freedom to the people. People kept coming and we kept writing new signs to let them all show their solidarity. Many Palestinian journalists and a team from Haaretz were busy taking photos and making interviews, as can be seem from the multitude of news items about the event that were published today.

Finally a group of high-school students that came to visit the court as part of their “citizenship” class joined the demonstration. They were taking pictures of themselves, proving in practice that this time they really learned something about democracy and freedom of expression and the need to struggle for them.

At 13:15 we packed the vigil and some 50 of Dareen’s supporters entered the court’s building in order to attend the hearing, filling all the waiting halls in the second floor. We had to wait more than an hour before the previous (closed) hearing finished. But as we gathered to enter the courtroom we were blocked by the guards. They announced that the hearing will be held behind closed doors.

With no legal grounds, Judge Adi Bambiliya decided that it will be more pleasant and efficient to shut out Dareen’s family and supporters, including Knesset members Haneen Zoabi and Basel Ghattas. After some time Dareen’s father, alone, was allowed in. Only at 16:55, after almost all the supporting public went away in despair, the ten of us that still hanged around were allowed in.

All that the court achieved today was hearing one more policeman witness for the prosecution, named Salman ‘Amer. He is the guy that inspected Dareen’s smartphone and computer. From his words in court he seems not to be much of a computer expert, just like the policemen translator of Dareen’s poem, who witnessed in the previous hearing, had no qualifications in poetry or translation.

What we did learn about was the police’s racist viewpoint that stands behind the whole persecution of Dareen, like thousands of more Palestinians:

  • The witness mentioned many times that he had found in Dareen’s smartphone and computer “a picture of the ‘Mekhabelet’ from Afula”. ‘Mekhabel’ is a special Hebrew word for Palestinian resistance fighters, designated to de-humanize them. But Israa Abed, the women that was shot in Afula central station, was harmless and defenseless. Luckily she survived her cold-blood shooting – and was not accused by the Israeli police of any security offences.
  • One special ‘accusation’ against Dareen, coming up in Amer’s written testimony, was that she read a poem in “Woman’s Day” in Nazareth. My feminist friends commented that educated women are really a great danger to the regime.
  • Another proof of Dareen’s criminality, according to Amer, was that she participated in commemorating the Kafr Qasim massacre. On October 29, 1956, the Israeli army declared a curfew in Kafr Qasim near Tel Aviv, and killed 49 innocent Palestinians, mostly coming back from their fields or work and not knowing that they are in breach of the army’s orders. To the question of Abed Fahoum, the defense lawyer, what is wrong about commemorating this massacre Amer replied that it is “politics” and “goes against state security”!

Before we dispersed the judge tried to convince the parties to negotiate an agreed settlement. She told the defense lawyer that he should forget about abolishing the indictment. But she also pressed the prosecution to notice that they have some deep flaws in their case. The super-motivated prosecution lawyer, Elina Hardak, who doesn’t spare any effort to make life harder for Dareen, said that she can’t give ground. She claimed that the State Prosecutor and the Attorney General stand behind the case.

The hearing finished at 18:00. There are 5 more witnesses for the prosecution, and the next hearing was set for July 17, at 16:00. Another hearing was set for September 6. By this schedule Dareen will be denied her basic freedoms for more than a year before her case will be decided.

***

How Old Am I Now?

By Dareen Tatour | translated by Ahmed Zahran

Out of the darkness of my night–out of my prison
out of my anger erupting like a volcano
out of my hollow life—out of my tears
out of my day drenched in sadness
I have come to you, my fate!
With perplexed diamond tears
to register you, my birthdate,
to ask: How old am I now?

I am younger than all of them.
Yet, by my griefs, I am older than the days—
a chill has fostered me, and taught me
of people’s cunning.
Treachery both orphaned and undressed me—
and my eyes were buried in agony.

Since I came to the world,
need has shaped my image.
These toys of mine are remnants of a missile
and, when I am hungry, my food is fasting.
At last I’ve come to know that I have nothing
but tears and heaps of peace. 

Ahmed Aly Zahran is a teaching assistant at Menoufia University. He completed his M.A. in comparative literature with a thesis titled: “Color-Struggle in the Poetry of Amiri Baraka and Mohammed El-Faytouri: a Comparative Postcolonial Study.” He looks forward to writing his PhD and is also a poet searching for a publisher for his first collection.

***

Arab Poet Can See Neither Rhyme Nor Reason for Her Indictment

Haaretz

As Dareen Tatour wandered around the Nazareth courthouse on Sunday, no one there – including the security guards and police officers – would have considered her a threat. Wearing a shirt more appropriate for a teenage girl, Tatour walked excitedly around with friends and acquaintances, all of whom had come to support her.

No one could have imagined that this smiling woman had been deemed dangerous by the state, and that the only difference between her and the other people was the electronic leg cuff around her ankle.

Tatour, 35, is from the village of Reine, near Nazareth. Seven months ago, she was indicted for incitement to violence and supporting a terrorist organization. The prosecution asked the court to remand her until the end of legal proceedings against her, saying her charge sheet showed how dangerous she is.

She spent three months behind bars and was eventually released after a long legal battle, but with restrictions: For example, she was placed under house arrest in an apartment her brother rented for her in Kiryat Ono, near Tel Aviv.

Tatour smiles and says that if she really is such a danger, why was she allowed to go to Kiryat Ono?

On October 11, 2016, a week or so after the latest wave of violence broke out in the West Bank and Jerusalem, police came to her parents’ home in Reine and arrested her without any explanation. She was taken to the local police station in Nazareth for questioning.

“At the beginning, they called me things like a terrorist, and I didn’t understand what all the hubbub was about,” she recalls. “I also didn’t think I would be detained – I thought it would be a matter of a few hours and then I’d return home.”

Some three weeks after her arrest, though, she was indicted due to postings on Facebook and YouTube. She posted a number of videos on the latter, including reciting poems (in Arabic) she had written. The prosecution said the poems called for committing acts of violence and terrorism, as well as encouraging, praising and identifying with violent acts and terrorism.

The indictment quoted one of her poems, titled “Resist, My People, Resist Them”:

“Resist, my people, resist them. In Jerusalem, I dressed my wounds and breathed my sorrows / And carried the soul in my palm.
“For an Arab Palestine, I will not succumb to the ‘peaceful solution’ / Never lower my flags / Until I evict them from my land / I cast them aside for a coming time …
“Resist the colonialist’s onslaught / Pay no mind to his agents among us / Who chain us with the peaceful illusion.”

In a Facebook post, alongside a photograph of a woman from Nazareth who was shot in Afula bus station while waving a knife, Tatour wrote, “I am the next shahid [martyr].”

On Sunday, some 30 people gathered outside the Nazareth court to show their support, including the three Knesset members from the Balad party (part of the Joint Arab List faction).

Tatour doesn’t deny writing the posts and poems, but denies that she intended to incite violence.

“I wrote in a very difficult atmosphere – mostly after the murder of the Dawabsheh family [in July 2015] and Mohammed Abu Khdeir [the Palestinian youth murdered by Jewish extremists in July 2014], and I asked who will be the next shahid, who else would pay with their life? I have written poems from a very young age, and in 2010 published a book. I never imagined that poetry and writing would lead to my arrest and such serious charges,” she said.

Tatour’s case was postponed until September. Until then, she will remain under house arrest in Kiryat Ono.

THE LOVE SONG OF R. TAYYIP ERDOGHAN, BY SIR RUN RUN SHAW (WITH APOLOGIES TO T.S. ELIOT)

Ziad Fadel 

Let us go then, you and I, to the Syrian border

Where cannibals skulk beneath a sullen sky,

Like a mass of vermin vitalized by promise of Paradise

Let us go, through a multitude of psychopaths

Whose most urgent need is a hot, soapy bath.

There are border crossings which are a tedious argument

Of my most malicious intent, which

Leads me to an overwhelming conviction.

Oh, don’t ask why is it so,

Let me go to buy some petro.

 

On the Turkish border, the terrorists come and go

Hauling Syrian crude to a Turkish Amoco.

 

The yellow gas that rubs its way into a Syrian lung,

The yellow mist that erodes the sacs inside the Syrian lung,

Snuck its way into nostrils as their lungs were heaving

Acting like an ether which pulled their necks like chains

Accepted by the lying press as caused by Assad’s force

It slipped by everyone’s attention and took a ghastly course

But, since it was a hot September night

The Western Press became the ass upon the liar’s horse.

 

And is it worth it all?

Is it worthwhile to kill Assad’s Alawites,

His Christians, Druze and Sunni heretics?

After the bombings, beheadings and immolations,

The suicide attacks and homosexual defenestrations?

This, and I wish for even more.

I just don’t know how to put it;

It’s as if a puff of hashish threw my imaginings on the oda’s floor

Is it really worth the while

If some stupid dame threw a dagger at my neck

And leaping out the window should say

“That’s not where it was supposed to land,

That’s not it at all.”

 

I grow bold….I grow bold….

I shall wear my turban wrapped in gold.

 

I have seen the cannibals driving Toyotas on the sands

Parting the blondish particles all blown back

When the napalm wafts over villages leaving a limey track.

I have left my stink in the tunnels ‘neath Istanbul

With Syrian catamites wrapped in silk both red and brown

Till the U.N. Criminal Court awakens me, and I drown.

(December 18, 2015, Florence, Italy, by Sir Run Run Shaw, XVIII, Poet Laureate of the Far East and Polynesia,  with deep apologies to T.S. Eliot’s “Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”)
Read more

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Russian Girl’s Response to ISIS Threats to Attack Russia

Posted on

A Russian girl has posted her own response to an extremely graphic video purportedly produced by ISIS and threatening attacks on Russia.  While the original video included special effects and massive amounts of blood and violence, in this video we see  just the girl by herself, standing on a street, reciting her poetry. (Translation is below.)

The young lady is reportedly an employee of the killigil.ru site. The original video–i.e. the spewing volcano of hatred and gore she is responding to–was “discovered” by SITE and made public in the media on November 12. The Russian girl’s response was posted one day later.

SITE and Katz have of course been perceived by some as the real producers of the ISIS videos. I won’t bother getting into that here, as I think in some ways it would be a distraction. The real value here, and why I am posting this, is simply the Russian girl herself–a beautiful and fearless young woman giving her response to the deranged and demonic psychopaths threatening her country and her people.

But the poem she recites, as you will see, is quite interesting as well, particularly the last line where she makes mention of the “double-headed eagle.” It’s almost as if she’s naming the US and Israel as being among the chief backers of ISIS, or that’s the interpretation I give to it anyway.


Her poem…

«Скоро, очень скоро
От русского напора
Игиловская свора
Сбежит в одном белье!

Скоро, очень скоро
Рёв авиамотора
Над вашей головою
Послышится во тьме.

Вы нас не напугали —
Мы всё превозмогали
И вечно побеждали
В сражениях и боях.
А тут игра простая —
Для нас вы просто стая,
Песок пустынь глотая,
Потерпите вы крах…

Скоро, очень скоро
Придет конец террору
Сирийские просторы
Воскреснут навсегда

Скоро, очень скоро
Мы вас как мухомора,
Как пойманного вора
Раздавим без труда.

Родина святая
Без конца и края,
С земли с своей
Изгоним игиловских химер
И ваших злых солдатов
Из их же автоматов
Мы вежливо отучим
От всех плохих манер.

Скоро, очень скоро
Не смоете позора,
Одним щелчком затвора
Избавим мир от зла.

Скоро, очень скоро
Мы вас возьмем измором
Не скрыться вам от взора
Двуглавого орла».

Auto-translation…

“Soon very soon
From the Russian head
ISIL pack
Flee in his underwear!

Soon very soon
The roar of aircraft engine
Above Your Head
Is heard in the darkness.

You do not scare us –
We still prevailed
And ever won
The battles and battles.
And then the game is simple –
For us, you’re just a pack,
Sand desert swallowing,
Bear with you crash …

Soon very soon
There will come an end to terror
Syrian expanses
Will rise forever

Soon very soon
We have you as a bad mushroom,
How to Catch a Thief
Crush easily.

Motherland
With no end in sight,
On land with his
Banish ISIL chimeras
And your evil soldiers
From their own machines
We politely break with
From all the bad manners.

Soon very soon
Do not wash away the shame
With a click of the shutter
Rid the world of evil.

Soon very soon
We’ll take you into submission
Do not you hide from view
Double-headed eagle. ”

(hat tip to Nina Sidorova)

Omar al-Farra … goodbye

الشاعر عمر الفرا – رجال الله

عمر الفرا – الوطن

ثور و اشعل التنور قصيد جد جد رائعة للشاعر عمر الفرا

الشاعر عمر الفرا وقصيدة في السيد حسن والمقاومة

الشاعر العربي الكبير عمر الفرا في اليمن امة عربية واحدة هنا دمشق

لمحة عن حياة الشاعر الكبير شاعر المقاومة عمر الفرا

قصيدة “رجال الله” للشاعر الراحل عمر الفرا بصوت د. خالد المطرود في برنامج استديو الحدث 22-6-2015

مداخلة الإعلامي نزار الفرا في استديو الحدث

ضد التيار / عمر الفرا / الجزء الأول

ضد التيار / عمر الفرا / الجزء الثاني


قصة أمك للشاعر المبدع عمر الفرا.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

So Brazenly Selfish … a poem by m. dennis paul

So Brazenly Selfish a poem by m. dennis paul

So Brazenly Selfish
Facing mortality is something one rejects in youth
questions as time passes and those around us fade away
then embraces as years show their harsh rewards

It seems this should thus be

Knowing there is an expectation of fewer days in my calendar
fewer than I would like
I sometimes worry there may be too few
within which to accomplish a singular dream

Should existence thus be so?

My mind wanders to tiny once beaming faces of children
in Iraq
infants
in Syria
babies
in Palestine
toddlers
in Yemen
crawlers
in Mali
and far too many other places on this fading old planet
far too many existences whose moments of time
were too few
calendars too brief
within which to mark their nights and days
of dreams

Still I question
is it not so brazenly selfish
to wish
to pray
…just one more year
for me

—m. dennis paul

World War Three (a poem) by M. Dennis Paul

World War Three (a poem)

by M. Dennis Paul

For the past several weeks, I have been forced

to confront a seemingly ceaseless melancholy

of unknown origin.

Each day, I ask the same question of

the universe..

What is so strong a force that this cloud cannot be rested

from my weary place of existence?

Each day, I see images in my heart that bring tears

for humanity

and this is the only response I receive.

I have dealt with bouts of sadness throughout my life

as, no doubt, have many, many others.

The key, here, is that I have dealt with them.

Solved the puzzling and dispatched the blues post haste.

It is different now.

Dark clouds growing ever darker

and the heaviest of rains

falling upon my hard lifted head.

Looking deeper, as I must, I realize the images

are of a madness so profound that no remedy seems willing.

The eyes of world leaders,

so many I know to be sociopathic

( being polite as possible),

have, of late, become unavoidably recognized

as having become undeniably sinister.

Speeches undeniably concocted in the Ministry of DoubleSpeak and

filled with irrational rationales for death and destruction

on a global scale.

Endless droning of unmanned weapons of murder,

the modern birds of prey,

circle above starving masses and,

tired of the death watch,

extract what little life is left in the betrayed

with poisonous droppings launched

with applauded inaccuracy.

Leaders spitting venom at each other

through angered messengers.

Nations being destroyed and looted with the only reason being

because we can and

the blood of our kills keeps us young and vital.

Families dying of thirst and hunger

as food fills dumpster after land fill.

Families freezing to death, dying of exposure from heat,

from depleted uranium,

from man made gasses

and pools of vile chemical extirpators.

Cops becoming military troops against all sense

and killing with impunity the long minimized

young and tinted.

Hands up-don’t shoot making clearer targets

as opposed to changed thinking and logic.

My heart has been lifted, at times, by the cry of youth

and its return in some surviving elders as they point at the inanity

and inequality

and lack of quality

but soon it is overtaken by

the chemically manipulated,

media lobotomized

mass of fearful and dreadfully ignorant souls

who propagate the planet with inconsolable hunger

for new toys, status or invisibility.

Too many have come to mirror

the thousand mile stares of the insane

or the eyes and minds of the twisted double speakers.

Too many cheering the murders of innocents and innocence.

Too many voting for what they have been trained

to believe

is in their interest.

Too many swallowing ladles of detritus

and grinning in pride.

Happy they got to the trough before others.

Once, many years ago, an elder

veteran of a foreign war

told me he knew the war was coming

not just because of the language leaders were using

or that filtered through media

but because he felt this overwhelming melancholy,

seemingly ceaseless

with reason unknown.

And, he said,

the world as we knew it went to war

and nobody but the makers with their sinister eyes

knew why.

-o-

Alive

By Nahida

O my O my !

Didn’t I bomb your village to smithereens?

Didn’t I crush your bones last July ?

Didn’t I blow your head up to pieces?

Didn’t I shoot you in the eye?

What are you doing here?

Why are you still alive?

Just tell me why?

* * *

Yes, indeed

You did kill us all

But

We… forgot… to… die

brave2


0


1 - Copy


01q


00001aa


2 - Copy


4 - Copy


9


15


16 - Copy


610xulw - Copy


18190_467244339984804_779336497_n


20483_10151878281578854_519749057_n


21677_313611545418610_1245555600_n


24765_345085476306_306817171306_4015728_2572260_n


24765_345087606306_306817171306_4015762_514130_n


24946_384739231541_6737070_n


33530_412760156306_306817171306_5076225_235431_n


34747_409466676306_306817171306_4978545_2446919_n


34799_460644166306_306817171306_6000717_7821714_n


40379_419818986306_306817171306_5266446_3723629_n


40342_415871111306_306817171306_5160450_7397653_n


45150_114140778639745_108514095869080_87191_1290283_n


58367_365646736860793_1521501292_n


164623_483860264985579_58388841_n copy


167382_167636236614132_123703501007406_363887_7537648_n


180193_178625488848540_123703501007406_427088_3936732_n


190310_4773233410179_463891424_n


205111_189272994450456_123703501007406_496138_6142116_n


215805_195876420456780_123703501007406_548377_926164_n


205731_552072234803085_1660859213_n


224140_195764460467976_123703501007406_547503_2611609_n


246645_1879160532631_1049816547_31806190_2525744_n


248620_136036746555415_974266700_n


248977_201079046603184_123703501007406_584497_4541887_n


318865_220527071411526_276242387_n


377277_491821734163008_376397583_n


383552_375984025813138_1347584497_n


387098_341063269340104_851867144_n


524226_305603086173399_874893897_n


531126_302868929826205_1681819421_n


550412_511741572170641_1596264860_n


557585_302875539825544_45438891_n


10440935_653041044793743_742641353843437388_n


1101000728-1


Amal, 11 years old.


clip_image002


image003

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

GROWING small (Originally for Samer and now also for Shireen Issawi)

GROWING small (Originally for Samer and now also for Shireen Issawi)

Comments comments (0)

This body represents the earth, the sky and water

You cannot exile all these no matter how you try

These hands will not sign papers to appease misguided reason

for your attempt to imprison this body

The only crime is your attempt

Watch me as I grow small

This body does not bend to your injustice

beat it as you will or kill it as my brothers’ before me

You flail and scream at the earth, laugh in the face of the sky

and cast stale bread upon the water

The only crime is your contempt

Watch me as I grow small

To my people you bring suffering through taking

taking what you believe to be your earth, your sky and your water

Stealing whatever they might possess for the short time their hearts beat in this world

except their dignity. their hopes and their dreams

The only crime is your greed

Watch me as I grow small

From my family you took their shelters and trees and fruits of all their labors

you came like a thief in the night to shatter sleep

Tormenting them in ways your phosphorous, and bombs and missles never could

Yet they are earth and wind and water too and you cannot possess them

The only crime is your avarice

Look at me as I grow small

So foolish you are thinking you have walled us in and that we all are prisoners

whether here in your jails or there in our villages

Thinking that only you deserve the earth, the sky and water

Chosen, you think, so all is yours and all others be damned

The only crime is your arrogance

See me as I grow small

Now you look at me and before you is a man half once his size

Your prison jumper hangs from my limbs

cheeks shallow as my eyes

But I am twice the man you will ever be, Netanyahu

and twice that of these guards and all your soldiers

and all the earth and all the sky and all the water will be free

watch me as I grow smaller and slip through

you cannot stop me

…..M. Dennis Paul, Ph.D.

Samih al-Qasim, Palestine’s Lorca

Late Palestinian poet Samih al-Qasim (Photo: Al-Akhar)
Published Thursday, August 21, 2014

The third pillar of Palestinian “resistance poetry” has fallen. 

The first, Tawfiq Ziad, died prematurely in 1994. 
Then Mahmoud Darwish followed, more than a decade later. 
Now, Samih al-Qasim (1939-2014) has closed the curtain on this chapter of Palestinian poetry.
Damascus – The trio were the most prominent of the Poets of the Occupied Territories – as the title of one Nizar Qabbani poem called them. We learned the anthems of Palestine from them, with attention, enthusiasm, and ecstasy, and thanks to them, we were able to form a detailed portrait of Palestine, and her orange, olive, and plum groves. Even their sweet aroma slipped through the borders and the fences of the occupied land along with each poem of his that crossed them.

We learned the anthems of Palestine from them, with attention, enthusiasm, and ecstasy, and thanks to them, we were able to form a detailed portrait of Palestine, and her orange, olive, and plum groves.

Tawfiq Ziad departed our world. Mahmoud Darwish had left his homeland. But Samih al-Qasim remained in Palestine, “Like a Solitary Sword” – to paraphrase from a poem by Amr ibn Ma’adi Yakrib – and retained a sharp tone that accepted no compromise.
Qasim infused a Canaanite spirit into his anthems in a poetical construction that mobilized and incited action. He invoked the eloquence of our ancestors in shoring up his tone of defiance, and his poems often were tributes to Palestine’s geography, which always was the bearing he followed toward freedom.
Samih al-Qasim started out as a communist but he ultimately became a solid Arab nationalist at a time of national weakness and degeneration, and a time where many of his compatriots went on to befriend the enemy. He trimmed his texts from “internationalist illusions,” and “Standing Tall” – as the title of one of his poems declares – and returned to his origins among the country’s bloodied fields.
The poems he produced were not fleeting, but had deep roots that dug into the soil, and left an ineffaceable mark. Their underlying melody was like a marriage of violins and flutes, with an air of good tidings, as though all the defeats, setbacks, and instances of despair were not strong enough to muffle Qasim’s fiery, reverberating voice that forever entrenched the anthems of Palestinian resistance.
With Qasim, there was no distance to speak of between poem and song, and in 1958, he chose the name Aghani al-Durub, or Songs of the Alleys, as the title of his first diwan, or collection of poems. The charge of anger would only increase in the tone of his subsequent and defiant poems, including in “I Carried My Blood on My Palm, I Need No Permission,” and throughout 60 more titles.
His words covered many themes with immense creativity in what is a huge opus of hope in a reborn land, untarnished by the boots of the enemy, and a regenerated, deeply rooted identity, untainted by the mournful sentiments of nostalgia in exile.
Defending his overtly direct style, Qasim once wrote, “It is a bad sonata, but a strong a [musical] march.” Later on, Qasim wrote good sonatas as well. To be sure, not everything Qasim wrote falls under the “resistance poetry” genre, or the praise poetry genre, for which some criticized him. Yet the bloody history of his country was the overarching motif throughout his attempt to archive the collective pain of the Palestinians and his personal anguish, and above that, to tend to his open wound with the balsam of words.
His vast poetic output is often marked by distinct novelty, which goes side by side with his Homeric soul as it wanders between the Sea of Acre and the Negev Desert. Consider for instance how his collection of poems Diwan al-Hamasa [Anthology of Fervor] coexists with unorthodox titles like Ard Murawigha. Harir Kassed. La Baas. [Evasive Land. Sluggish silk. But It’s okay], or Collage.
The book Al-Rasa’il [The Letters] sheds light on other parts of his life. The book contains letters exchanged with his soul-mate Mahmoud Darwish, which capture an astounding dialogue between the homeland under occupation and exile; between hardness and nostalgia; between conscience and injury; and between the themes of captivity and the themes of migration.
Mahmoud Darwish wrote in one letter:
“Never in the history of human robbery, my dear, has anything like this ever happened, with the expulsion from one’s homeland being coupled with the attempted expulsion from one’s self-awareness and identity. It is as though we cannot say what is already said by reality at large, in a way that does not upset the balance of the planet itself. When the occupation becomes the occupier’s ‘sole homeland,’ it becomes required of us to apologize for what should be common sense, and to highlight the elegance of our murder in a way that is sensitive to the reputation of the dagger planted in our flesh.”
In another letter, Samih al-Qasim wrote:
“We are not a branch cut off from our nation’s tree. We are the guardians of its dreams and the bearers of its pure torch.” Later on, Mahmoud Darwish asked him in a tone of despair, “Where is my grave, brother? Where is my grave?” to which Samih replied, “Do not ask me where your grave lies. As long as this cradle remains an unresolved cause, then the grave, too, shall remain an embarrassing question with no answers.”

With Qasim, there was no distance to speak of between poem and song

Yet the theme of death had slipped into Qasim’s work early on. After all, he was the one who wrote Quraan al-Mawt wal Yasmine[the Book of Death and Jasmines] (1971);Al-Mawt Al-Kabir [The Great Death] (1972);Ilahi, Ilahi, Limatha Qataltani [God, God, Why Have You Murdered Me?] (1974); andSa Akhruju Min Sourati Thata Yawm [I Will Leave My Form One Day] (2000).
It was as though this poet’s life was dedicated to calamity, from being detained by the occupation’s forces, to his house arrest, and to being ravaged by cancer that dueled with him for many long years. Palestinian writer Alaa Hlayhel asked him once in a long interview, “Did cancer not break you?” Qasim answered, “I have not been broken but something in me has definitely been bent. But my core has not broken.” With such strong will, Samih al-Qasim led his fragmented life, caught between many barriers, and his poems traversed the borders without losing any of its anger, eloquence, and rebel spirit.
We shall remember vividly that exceptional time when he visited Damascus, years ago, and went to the Yarmouk refugee camp before its recent devastation. He was carried on the shoulders through the camp for seven kilometers, as though the people of the camp wanted to repay him with a different kind of poetic gesture.
In the end, is it only a coincidence that the author of Kitab al-Quds [The Book of Jerusalem] passed away on the same day that Andalusian poet Federico Garcia Lorca had died?
This article is an edited translation from the Arabic Edition.

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   
The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

I Cannot Shield You From All This Madness (Poem for the beautiful little ones of Palestine)

I Cannot Shield You From All This Madness (Poem for the beautiful little ones of Palestine)

تمزق قلبي، واحد بلدي قليلاً
كما أشاهد الضوء في عينيك الجميلة
الضحك في خطوط وجهك العطاء
في لحظة تغيرت إلى الخوف
الارتباك، فقدان، دموع
وأنا هنا
يتعذر على اتصال لك
لا يمكن أن تقيك من كل هذا الجنون
لا يمكن حماية نفسي من كل هذا الجنون
حتى أشاهد، دموع الحزن، دموع للإفراج عن
مشاهدة الخاص بك تعويم روح لطيف بعيداً عن بلدي تاتش
يشعر بلدي مزق القلب من خلال صدري
واحد بلدي قليلاً
بلدي واحد قليلاً الشجعان
بلدي واحد لطيف قليل

My heart is torn, my little one
as I watched the light in your beautiful eyes
the laughter in the lines of your tender face
in an instant changed to fear
confusion, loss, tears
and I am here
I cannot touch you
Cannot shield you from all this madness
Cannot shield myself from all this madness
So I watch, tears of sadness, tears of release
watch your gentle spirit float away from my touch
feel my heart rip through my chest
my little one
my brave little one
my gentle little one

….M. Dennis Paul

Cinderella Palestine

Posted on  by Nahida Exiled Palestinian

Mama, habibti mama

When you hold me in your arms

Don’t you cry

Hold your tears,  show me your smile

Where I am now, there are no bombs

No bullets shooting, no guns

No more fear and no more pain

All quiet and serene

10364022_10152554478591030_7093778215642852374_n

Mama, habibti mama

When you search where my room once was

If you find my Eid dress

Never to be worn, for I am gone

Don’t be sad, for I am really fine

When you kiss my favourite pink shoes

Don’t cry, the stains on them

My shoes in heaven are rainbow and clean

I can put them on all by myself, now

Then I jump, I float and fly

10401961_10203050670481537_1111087800022707728_n

Mama, habibti mama

If you find baba, when dust and smoke settles down

Tell him not to cry

Hold his hand and say: “your daughter is fine”

Her translucent wings are made of stars

Her dress has no blood stains, no more

Silk with sparkles, her favourite colours, pink, lilac and azure

10575437_798486083527147_1873153247703100160_o

Mama, habibti mama

When someone gives you my baby brother’s shoes

Don’t let your tears run down

In Heaven he runs, joyous, all smiles

No more fear and no more pain

All quiet and serene

He holds my hand as we hover around

The Thorn of the Most Loving Most Kind

10561633_661334013960649_5265796276878512343_n

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Woe unto thee, ye “Israel” !

Micah 2: 1-4

Woe to those who plan iniquity,

 to those who PLOT EVIL on their beds!

1910446_1515432625352946_7753021796588606542_n

At morning’s light they carry it out

because it is in their power to do it.

10407461_797354006973688_2926764026307591204_n

They covet fields and seize them,

 and houses, and take them.

They defraud people of their homes,

 they rob them of their inheritance.

1653485_387900611375433_7403753943223891970_n

Therefore, the Lord says:

 “I am planning disaster against this people,

 from which you cannot save yourselves.

 You will no longer walk proudly,

 for it will be a time of calamity.

10410245_706556749421229_436961056953012599_n

In that day people will ridicule you;

they will taunt you with this mournful song:

‘We are utterly ruined;

10440705_739830499414095_3515140789981000555_n

You drive the women of my people

from their pleasant homes.

You take away my blessing

from their children forever.

10556300_738683289522831_3483726907755638010_n

Get up, go away!

For this is not your resting place,

because it is defiled,

it is ruined, beyond all remedy.

10409456_656600081100156_6290967436551598603_n

Micah 3

Listen, you leaders of Jacob,

you rulers of Israel.

Should you not embrace justice,

you who hate good and love evil;

who tear the skin from my people

and the flesh from their bones;

10488132_892566460757674_213125475698687539_n

who eat my people’s flesh,

strip off their skin

10399980_1445229455756595_2814904926325430885_n

and break their bones in pieces;

who chop them up like meat for the pan,

like flesh for the pot?”

10294402_793077317401357_3955075751452952767_n

Then they will cry out to the Lord,

but he will not answer them.

At that time he will hide his face from them

because of the evil they have done.

10325219_746821238689318_2813415023179534538_n copy

Hear this, you leaders of Jacob,

you rulers of Israel,

who despise justice

and distort all that is right;

1965041_292168267574432_587841099_n

who build Zion with bloodshed,

and Jerusalem with wickedness.

1288908104golani_brigade_israeli_army_articles

Her leaders judge for a bribe,

her priests teach for a price,

An Ultra-Orthodox Jewish man gestures as

and her prophets tell fortunes for money.

Yet they look for the Lord’s support and say,

“Is not the Lord among us?

No disaster will come upon us.”

62994_10151563925148832_1284846657_n

Therefore because of you,

Zion will be plowed like a field,

Jerusalem will become a heap of rubble,

the temple hill a mound overgrown with thickets.

10525731_10204227599353113_5434121572176025518_n

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Do you hear my pain? by Nahida Exiled Palestinian

10464054_670743503002527_1485156700862482243_n

My rose

Where is your head I used to hold in my hands ?

Where is your rosy cheek to kiss goodbye ?

What did they do to your beautiful smile ?

Sweetheart

What did they do to you?

O my pain, my pain

Throbbing

O World

Do you hear my pain?

SEE ALSO

 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

No birds in Palestine by m. dennis paul

No birds in Palestine

not yesterday or the day before
no form passing by windows
no glass shards catching light

no birds in Palestine
nests fractured and fallen
crushed under eaves now on ground

no birds in Palestine
no trees for hiding in nor poles to rest
for all have fallen down

no birds in Palestine

not yesterday or the day before
no breath in acrid smoke and dust
no birds caress the breeze

no singing to each other
no nurturing of young nor mourning
no bodies have yet been found

no birds in Palestine

not yesterday or the day before
no rustling in the attic
no dancing on roofs no longer there

no crumbs of bread in talons grabbed
no roost to bring crumbs to
no water to wash crumbs down

no birds in Palestine

not yesterday or the day before
no feathers nor blood
no ashen outlines can be found

no birds in Palestine
no birds in Palestine
no birds in Palestine

not yesterday or the day before
and none so far today
will birds ever return to Palestine

they will if I have my way

By m.dennis paul

Taha Muhammad Ali reads Revenge at the Dodge Poetry Festival Posted

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

Anything will do, BUT…

By Nahida

Higgs Boson Seems To Prove That The Universe Doesn’t Exist

Screen Shot 2014-06-26 at 11.31.01

 

space17

 First it was all an “accident”

Then it was millions upon trillions upon zillions of “coincidences”

Then it was all “purposelessness”

Then it was “denial of its existence” all together

space12

***

Well, well, well

Anything will do

Any absurdity will do

Any amalgamation of words is a theory

Any theory is “science”

As long as

It does not mention a probability of

A Creator,

An Intelligent Designer,

An Awareness

And a meaningful purpose for it all

Got that?

images_0vy3

——–End——–

I would add 4 Video

 

 

 

 

River to Sea Uprooted Palestinian   

The views expressed in this article are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of the Blog!

The Spirit of John F. Kennedy

jfk1

The following is an excerpt of a speech given by Kennedy on October 26, 1963 at Amherst College in Massachusetts. The poet Robert Frost had died in January of that year. In the speech, the president spoke of Frost as well as the role played by artists in nourishing a nation’s spirit, and of the vital necessity of artists remaining free to speak the truth.


Speech transcript

Our national strength matters, but the spirit which informs and controls our strength matters just as much. This was the special significance of Robert Frost. He brought an unsparing instinct for reality to bear on the platitudes and pieties of society. His sense of the human tragedy fortified him against self-deception and easy consolation. “I have been” he wrote, “one acquainted with the night.” And because he knew the midnight as well as the high noon, because he understood the ordeal as well as the triumph of the human spirit, he gave his age strength with which to overcome despair. At bottom, he held a deep faith in the spirit of man, and it is hardly an accident that Robert Frost coupled poetry and power, for he saw poetry as the means of saving power from itself. When power leads men towards arrogance, poetry reminds him of his limitations. When power narrows the areas of man’s concern, poetry reminds him of the richness and diversity of his existence. When power corrupts, poetry cleanses. For art establishes the basic human truth which must serve as the touchstone of our judgment.

The artist, however faithful to his personal vision of reality, becomes the last champion of the individual mind and sensibility against an intrusive society and an officious state. The great artist is thus a solitary figure. He has, as Frost said, a lover’s quarrel with the world. In pursuing his perceptions of reality, he must often sail against the currents of his time. This is not a popular role. If Robert Frost was much honored in his lifetime, it was because a good many preferred to ignore his darker truths. Yet in retrospect, we see how the artist’s fidelity has strengthened the fibre of our national life.

If sometimes our great artists have been the most critical of our society, it is because their sensitivity and their concern for justice, which must motivate any true artist, makes him aware that our Nation falls short of its highest potential. I see little of more importance to the future of our country and our civilization than full recognition of the place of the artist.

If art is to nourish the roots of our culture, society must set the artist free to follow his vision wherever it takes him. We must never forget that art is not a form of propaganda; it is a form of truth. And as Mr. MacLeish once remarked of poets, there is nothing worse for our trade than to be in style. In free society art is not a weapon and it does not belong to the spheres of polemic and ideology. Artists are not engineers of the soul. It may be different elsewhere. But democratic society–in it, the highest duty of the writer, the composer, the artist is to remain true to himself and to let the chips fall where they may. In serving his vision of the truth, the artist best serves his nation. And the nation which disdains the mission of art invites the fate of Robert Frost’s hired man, the fate of having “nothing to look backward to with pride, and nothing to look forward to with hope.”

I look forward to a great future for America, a future in which our country will match its military strength with our moral restraint, its wealth with our wisdom, its power with our purpose. I look forward to an America which will not be afraid of grace and beauty, which will protect the beauty of our natural environment, which will preserve the great old American houses and squares and parks of our national past, and which will build handsome and balanced cities for our future.

I look forward to an America which will reward achievement in the arts as we reward achievement in business or statecraft. I look forward to an America which will steadily raise the standards of artistic accomplishment and which will steadily enlarge cultural opportunities for all of our citizens. And I look forward to an America which commands respect throughout the world not only for its strength but for its civilization as well. And I look forward to a world which will be safe not only for democracy and diversity but also for personal distinction.
Robert Frost was often skeptical about projects for human improvement, yet I do not think he would disdain this hope. As he wrote during the uncertain days of the Second War:

Take human nature altogether since time began . . .
And it must be a little more in favor of man,
Say a fraction of one percent at the very least . . .
Our hold on this planet wouldn’t have so increased.

Because of Mr. Frost’s life and work, because of the life and work of this college, our hold on this planet has increased.

***

‘Out, Out—’

By Robert Frost

The buzz saw snarled and rattled in the yard
And made dust and dropped stove-length sticks of wood,
Sweet-scented stuff when the breeze drew across it.
And from there those that lifted eyes could count
Five mountain ranges one behind the other
Under the sunset far into Vermont.
And the saw snarled and rattled, snarled and rattled,
As it ran light, or had to bear a load.
And nothing happened: day was all but done.
Call it a day, I wish they might have said
To please the boy by giving him the half hour
That a boy counts so much when saved from work.
His sister stood beside him in her apron
To tell them ‘Supper.’ At the word, the saw,
As if to prove saws know what supper meant,
Leaped out at the boy’s hand, or seemed to leap—
He must have given the hand. However it was,
Neither refused the meeting. But the hand!
The boy’s first outcry was a rueful laugh,
As he swung toward them holding up the hand
Half in appeal, but half as if to keep
The life from spilling. Then the boy saw all—
Since he was old enough to know, big boy
Doing a man’s work, though a child at heart—
He saw all was spoiled. ‘Don’t let him cut my hand off—
The doctor, when he comes. Don’t let him, sister!’
So. But the hand was gone already.
The doctor put him in the dark of ether.
He lay and puffed his lips out with his breath.
And then—the watcher at his pulse took fright.
No one believed. They listened to his heart.
Little—less—nothing!—and that ended it.
No more to build on there. And they, since they
Were not the one dead, turned to their affairs.

jfk2
And the buzz saw continues to snarl and rattle…snarl and rattle…

iflag

%d bloggers like this: