I come from summer eternal, infernal.
Wind over the slattened hills
rattles the olive trees like silver
shingles on a tin roof.
Thirty coins of silver
and I sold my soul. It was too much
effort to fight for it, so I let it be torn
from me, left it flapping in the wind
like the flags of Gaza,
beaten, shoddy, hand-pieced,
flying above the sewage and dust;
one barbed wire has been traded for another
Even the language is barbed,
snares me by the throat, habibi.
Your father's silenced cry, your grandfather's ash
have in my lashes
like a frightened bird
flapping itself to death
in a desperate lunge for freedom.
Heart attack, save me.
Keep me from running
headlong into the sea,
to wring from its waters the fish
that should feed a multitude
The fences are gone, but where to go?
All these years you were dying of thirst;
The sea langouring in your backyard
but for a gun in the watchtower