Requiem for a Poet

State of Seige

Standing here. Sitting here. Always here. Eternally here, 
we have one aim and one aim only: to continue to be. 
Beyond that aim we differ in all. 
We differ on the form of the national flag (we would have done well if we had chosen
o living heart of mine, the symbol of a simple mule).
We differ on the words of the new anthem 
(we would have done well to choose a song on the marriage of doves). 
We differ on the duties of women
(we would have done well to choose a woman to run the security services).
We differ on proportions, public and private. 
We differ on everything. We have one aim: to continue to be.
After fulfilling this aim, we will have time for other choices.

Mahmoud Darwish,  March 14, 1941 – August 9, 2008

Mahmoud Darwish laid to rest:

The streets of Ramallah were lined with flags and posters quoting Mahmoud Darwish’s poetry.

A giant banner bearing his photograph hung over the central square.

Darwish was ever-present as thousands paid their last respects to the beloved national poet.

Not just a globally-acclaimed writer, he is famed for giving an eloquent voice to the Palestinian national struggle.

Many Palestinians spoke of the loss of much more than a great poet.

“He was our words, our voice,” many mourners told me.    […]

Al Jazeera

2 thoughts on “Requiem for a Poet

  1. He’s come back home now. I love the verses you have selected. It’s a good representation of his better poetry. Thank you for the emotive picture too. The streets tell ever more than the press.
    So long, Darwish.

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