Elizabeth Hopp

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