Samra Mahfoud – Departure time

Mahfoud LE P&W March 2024

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Live Encounters Poetry & Writing March 2024.

Departure time, poem by Samra Mahfoud.

Departure time

It’s departure time; it’s time to go;
I’ll carry some luggage and leave.
Or maybe I’ll not take it;
I’ll carry only my identity,
or maybe not—
I lost my identity.
Yes, since we fell apart, it’s lost;
Since we became strangers to each other;
Since we started killing each other
Because our identities differed
Since then, we lost it.
Look, I am not a poet,
And this is not a poem.
Just take a look at it
And you will find a city;
You will find a village;
You will find a child;
You will find a country in ruins,
A country that means nothing to the world
After it was the second homeland of half the world.
So, I will not take my identity.
Who cares about it?
Who cares about me?
Who would recognize me?
I’m the stranger in her own country;
I’m the homeless in her own home.
So, who will recognize me?
I walk in streets I knew,
But they don’t know me now.
I’m losing one of my guises with each step,
So, who will recognize me?
I don’t know me:
This is not my face, nor my eyes;
These are not my hands or my feet;
This is not my dream, not my laughter;
This is not my land, nor my family
I ‘m losing me.
Who could recognize me now?
My heart is bleeding,
And my tears try in vain to purify it.
The blood mixes with the tears
And a river of grief floods
A home without an identity.
The cold is eating me;
The darkness is blinding me;
The hunger is killing me
Do you recognize me?
The stranger in her own land;
The homeless in her own home.
Everything is gone from me, except my desire to leave.
It’s the time of departure;
In the sky above, there is no need of anything.

© Samra Mahfoud

Samra Mahfoud, from Syria. Master degree in Environmental Management from Ca’Foscari University-Italy. A translator English-Arabic and Arabic-English. Works as Director of Public and External Relations at Daal Publishing House. Joyce’s Music Book is her first published work which is a collection of poems by the Irish writer James Joyce that is published by Daal Publishing House-Syria.

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