Dear Brother

Dear Brother,

I sleep, but I do not rest.
I eat, but I can not taste.
I read, but I do not comprehend.
I miss you like the moon misses the stars.

My heart aches with agony and my mind is bombarded with old memories. I should have said I love you more. I should have gave you my attention, but I was too immersed in my miseries. Now I feel the ultimate sorrow because I’m alone with no one and you seem so far.
The sweet smell of musk is still in your empty room along with the clothes you left behind.

I sit in this empty café staring at the blank walls trying to find some inspiration for this endless poem, this poem that can’t even come close to describe my feelings. Not knowing anything is like an ocean of deep emotions flowing steadfastly with the same clouds that carry your soul back to God.

Everyone moved on and the world rotates on its angular axis as if your boots never set foot on the dirt roads of this temporary place.

You know your friend, yes, the one who used to pick you up past midnight against mom’s wishes. The one who would wait to carry you to this sinful place of unimaginable characters and narrow roads. And mom would wait by the window with the moonlight illuminating the curves of her saddened face and glossy eyes that try so hard to hold back the tears. Well, he got married this weekend and all I kept thinking about was you.

I remember me silently watching you struggle and sometimes I would be upset with you because you wanted to be friends with someone else’s sister and not me. I would be upset that you treasured my opinion of you too much that you wouldn’t let me into your secrets.

And you left like the merciless winter leaves the bare naked hearts. You left me with no warning, no good bye, no assurance of where you are. I’m an open wound because of you. Because of you.
I wanted you to live to see the day that I would hear the words that diligently escape your mouth that would tell me how proud you are of me. That you’d loved me all along and I was just too young to realize.

Are you uncertain? Or just scared of what might come? Would you come back if you could? So many unanswered questions that I’m waiting for you to answer. Then again, was the love I received the love that I gave?

You stomped my heart with your boots along the road that you chose. Those boots carry heavy weights. Carry unspoken words of pain and confusion. Those boots carry your weary feet that tread this Earth looking for its Creator. Those feet will carry you far, ya akhi (my brother), only if you let them. Those boots will soak up the rivers of tears I cried in hope that I can get another chance. I’m sorry I never paid attention.

I’m sorry I never said “I love you” enough because I was too preoccupied with other things. I’m sorry I could not be there for you and lighten the burdens that brought down your shoulders. I’m sorry. I remember the hospital bed like it was yesterday…I was 13 and I collapsed on your shoulder and cried because I thought the angels were going to descend from heaven and take you on a one-way trip. But all you said was, “It’s okay ya okhti (my sister), it’s not a big deal.”

Not a big deal that you were almost killed or not a big deal that the Israeli forces beat you to a pulp? Not a big deal. I know you had courage ever since you were young and you wanted to be my hero. Don’t worry, you’ll always be my hero.

You’d try to leave this Earth twice each on a Friday. So five years later, I write these words in hope that they might reach you, even though they might not in this life, I pray they will in the hereafter.

So may our final meeting place be beneath the place in which rivers flow and the sweet scent of jannat will resonate our souls. InsA.

But I am strong like you because I still look up you and this is just an ounce of pain that the rest of my brothers and sisters face in oppressed lands.
These lands echo how unfair life is and the absence of love that has been robbed in every home. Even the angels cry when blood is shed from the satanic hands of tyrants. Even the angels cry when children cry for their missing mothers. What about us? What about them? What about every thing in this world that matters? Or do these things even matter? It’s not about things or emotions, its about strength because these hardships will go as fast as they came…so then the accountability with the Almighty will come. Be strong because strength comes to those who will prosper. So we shall wait again for another one hundred and fifty years.

One hundred and fifty years.
One hundred and fifty years.
One hundred and fifty years of the sorrows of mothers drowned in tears.
One hundred and fifty years of pain only followed by tomorrow’s fears
One hundred and fifty years of bloodshed and stolen human rights
One hundred and fifty years of love lost in the midst of smoke from ashes of fallen soldiers from the never-ending fights
One hundred and fifty years of oppression and broken tea glasses on the floors
One hundred and fifty years of barbed wire caging us like we are animals
One hundred and fifty years of French resistance in the hands of condescending bastards
One hundred and fifty years of rape and enslavement
One hundred and fifty years of red wine blood spilled on pavements
One hundred and fifty years.
If the date palm trees could speak they would be silent but their souls would cry, would cry for the children of Palestine, would cry for the children of Algeria, would cry for the children of Iraq and Lebanon and Syria.
If the clouds could showcase the atrocities they have witnessed like films, no one’s eyes would cry because they would be dry too dry of hate and resentment for the cruelty that we are so capable of.
One hundred and fifty years, the world did not speak.
One hundred and fifty more years, will the world ever speak?
Your sister.


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