O Palestine

POETRY FORMAT, 26 Sep 2016

Prof. Mazin Qumsiyeh – TRANSCEND Media Service

Your sisters stayed in their palaces
With golden chains and shameless lies
Some grinned and aided criminals…
Others chose to veil their eyes
Some justify rape and expulsions
Others prayed to their silent gods.

When you thought they had their fills
In that dry June of decays,
They climbed over the hills
To finish the ghastly deeds

Sickening became the violations
Dark masses on your strong arms
arms that gently lifted orphans
Armenian, Circasian, Hebrew and Druze
Fractures on your white breasts
That gave milk to hungry babies
Bruises on your gentle fingers
That wiped the tears from so many eyes
Your sad eyes bear their marks
on a kind face that gave millions hopes

Maddening deafening sounds
Of violent bloody rapes
Of countless lengthy reports
Of motions, plans, and resolutions
that sacrificed justice and truths
at the altar of greedy egos

Where goes the hope of children dreams?
In awakening consciences?
In olive trees or returning cactuses?
In time, distance, or struggles?
In awakening heart deep in majestic mountains?
Beating beneath silent deserts?
Occasionally erupting ‘intifadas’?

The lost men hopelesly lust for power crums
endlessly argue about keys
While she struggles to break the doors
And tear down the suffocating walls
Clans and Tribes follow mirages
and weaklings imagine strength in lies

But in the end no one denies
Your ancient spirit survives
To help heal all bruises
yours and ours
When the sun again shines
O Palestine


Prof. Mazin Qumsiyeh is a member of the TRANSCEND Network for Peace, Development and Environment, author of Sharing the Land of Canaan and Popular Resistance in Palestine. He is a professor at Bethlehem University and director of the Palestine Museum of Natural History in Bethlehem. http://palestinenature.org

Published in Human Liberation (Nakba 48) Vol 1, No 1, Sept 2005; also in French at ISM France http://www.france-palestine.org/Oh-Palestine.


This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 26 Sep 2016.

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One Response to “O Palestine”

  1. Gary Corseri says:

    Thank you, Mazin Qumsiyeh. A subject such as this should elicit nothing but the finest thoughts, emotions, poetry and art. The elicitation was successful here.

    The metaphor of Palestine as a virtuous woman raped over centuries–even by those she has helped and nurtured–is apt, powerful and acutely disturbing.

    Let us have more such symbiotic work in the realm of politics, spirituality, and the arts!