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مكسور (BROKEN)

June 3, 2011 in Poets At Work

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 مكسور  (BROKEN)
You don’t have to speak Iraqi Arabic to say
“murdered child,” or
“murdered aunt of nearly dead child,” or
“murdered grandfather of critically wounded child.”
It’s the same in any language
whether you love or hate the speaker.
in the villages where women
hide their expectations
under their burquas,
All men are interrogators.
The women live in a no-women’s land
frozen in sand,
bullet-riddled walls
where sweet Sanaa and
funny Raheem
mull over childhoods that won’t end in death.
We’ve broken their backs, America.
We are Pharaohs over a paraplegic population.
What more could we ask for?
Still, we ask for more.
We are our own pasts, America.
We are destroyers of what others cherish.
S O U L is a country we burned to ash
longer ago than there is memory.
How can we survive when our
journey begins with a funeral procession?
How can we dare to live a present
that teeters on the edge of
a history without remorse?
The average American is lonelier than
the average jellyfish and rightfully so—
urine doesn’t calm our country’s sting.
I wish this was an abstraction,
an allegory, but it’s not.
These words spell reality,
they spell lamentation,
they spell oceans’ endless accusation,
they spell the-whole-planet-can-explode-

and-we-will-stay-at-war.

 

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