Thursday, November 26, 2009

Beirut Journal Day #19: Thanksgiving


Cariahnna, one of my students from Harlem Village Academy, emailed me yesterday and asked if I was going to be lonely this

"I can't even imagine being away from my family on thanksgiving," she said.

She got me thinking, and I'm so very thankful for that!

To My Mother
by Mahmoud Darwish

I yearn for my mother's bread,
My mother's coffee,
My mother's touch,
And childhood grows inside me
Day upon breast of day
And I love my life because,
If I died,
I'd feel shame for my mother's tears.

Take me, if one day I return,
As a veil for your lashes
And cover my bones with grass
Baptised in the purity of your heel
And fasten my bonds
With a lock of hair,
With a thread that trails in the train of your dress.
Maybe I would become a god,
A god I'd become,
If I touched the depths of your heart.

Put me, if I return,
As fuel in your cooking stove,
As a clothes-line on your rooftop,
For I have lost resolve
Without your daily prayer.
I have grown decrepit: Give me back the stars of childhood
That I may join
The young birds
On the return route
To the nest of your waiting.

(To all of you, whom I love so dearly (too many to mention, I'll be home soon.)

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