Mahmoud Darwish – Gaza

Darwish LE P&W January 2024

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Live Encounters Gaza Poetry & Writing, January 2024

Gaza, poem by Mahmoud Darwish.


Gaza is not the most beautiful city
Not the richest
Not the finest
It is not the largest
But it is equivalent to the history of the nation
Because it is uglier in the eyes of enemies, poorer, more Miserable, and more ferocious
Because it is the most capable of disturbing the enemy’s mood And comfort
Because it’s his nightmare
Because they are mined oranges
And children without a childhood
And old people without aging
And women without desires
Because of all this, it is the most beautiful, the purest, richest,
And most deserving of love among us
And the one most worthy of love.

Gaza has no horses, no planes, no magic wands, and no offices In capitals
It is true that Gaza has special circumstances and its special Revolutionary traditions
But its secret is not a mystery
Its resistance is popular and cohesive and knows what it wants
(it wants to expel the enemy from its clothes)
The relationship between the resistance and the masses is the
Relationship between skin and bone
It is not the teacher’s relationship with the students
Resistance in Gaza did not turn into a job
The resistance in Gaza did not turn into an institution

It did not accept anyone’s guardianship and did not leave its fate
Hinging on anyone’s signature or fingerprint
It does not matter much to her that we know her name, image, or eloquence
It could not believe it was media material
Did not prepare for photograph
It did not put smile paste on its face
Neither does it want that… nor we
Hence, Gaza is a losing business for brokers
Hence, it is an inestimable moral and ethical treasure for all Arabs

The beauty of Gaza is that nothing occupies it
Nothing turns its fist from the enemy’s face
The enemies may triumph over Gaza
They might break its bones
They may plant tanks in the stomachs of her children and Women
They may throw it into the sea, sand, or blood, but it
Will not repeat the lies and say to the invaders: Yes
And it will continue to explode
It is neither death nor suicide
But it is Gaza’s way of declaring its worthiness to live
And it will continue to explode.

© Mahmoud Darwish

Mahmoud Darwish (1941 –2008) was a famous Palestinian poet and author who was regarded as Palestine’s national poet. He won numerous awards for his works. Darwish used Palestine as a metaphor for the loss of Eden, birth and resurrection, and the anguish of dispossession and exile. He has been described as incarnating and reflecting the man of action whose action is poetry. He also served as an editor for several literary magazines in Palestine. In addition, he is the author of over 30 books of poetry and eight books of prose, and earned the Lannan Cultural Freedom Prize from the Lannan Foundation, the Lenin Peace Prize, and the Knight of Arts and Belles Lettres Medal from France.

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