Palestine 2009, a poem



A piece of cloud, distant and fleeting,
The clouded fate of longings,
Of people in floating weightlessness. Wailing over the wall,
Is the jaundiced West Bank moon,
Yellow, not white,
And hardly burning.

A raft of suffocating simoom blows,
There, where a tedious fight rages,
Mother tells son:
“Go, go one last time, son
we’ll catch next in paradise.”

But heaven knows, ’tis vain,
Brains and innards blown
Into the air,
Death is nightmare, not dream

Now, echoes of an intifada, dying,
An Arab hamlet’s graveyard, bustling,
Lights from Jerusalem, blinding,
I smell phosphorus,
How long, before I can breathe,
The breeze of Palestinian nativity?

Via Dolores, will Christ walk again?
Is Mohammed coming to Jerusalem? Or Moshe?
Political prophets bring us new revelations,
Of boots and occupation.

Neither war nor peace,
Nor land or trees,
Palestine, a piece of cloud now,
Distant and fleeting,
To the edge of nebulous time

(Written at Dan Hotel, Jerusalem, 20 December 2009)

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