Nakba Poetry-That’s not fair


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On the memory of Balfour declaration on the 2d of November 1917 I wrote the following poem

Palestinian poet Iqbal Tamimi


That’s not fair

In 1917

A man by the name of Balfour

From a very far land called Britain

Offered total strangers

Across oceans and shores

My homeland as a gift

He was not the owner of my country

Nor they have the right to be there

That was not fair


He said they were oppressed in Europe

And were treated very bad

We had nothing to do with his claims

He did not offer them part of his country

Yet he gave them everything we had

That was not fair


While the Ottomans were leaving Palestine

The British arrived

We were told the British mandate is there

To make sure peace prevail

But the British turned a blind eye

To the Jewish gangsters horrors

They were offered training and arms

By which they massacred our families

Wiping our villages from all the maps

And those who escaped death

The Zionists terrorised them

Forcing them to flee

That was not fair


The United Nations did not ask us what we think

They claimed the intention is to solve the conflict

They segmented my country on a platter

They gave the owners of the land the breadcrumbs

And gave the occupiers the biggest share

That was not fair


We became refugees

In our own home land

Mine fields, barbed wire and road blocks split us apart

My home became a headquarter

For the Israeli police

Total strangers from as far as Poland and Russia

Occupied our homes

Stolen our water and fruits

And imprisoned those who dared to declare

That they are not going to leave

That was not fair


In 1967

We were enjoying a day out

On the other side of the Jordan River

The Israeli army invaded the West Bank

Occupying our homes again

Rearranging our destiny

We were denied the right to go back

Forced to became second time refugees

Carrying on our shoulders

Our plight and despair

That was not fair


The good USA sent its aid

To both sides across the sea

The Israeli occupiers received

Rockets, tankers, planes and bombs

While the Palestinian refugees’ share

Was tents, biscuits and canned sardines

That was not fair


The secular politicians of the democratic West

Suddenly turned religious

When the Palestinian plight was discussed

They endorsed a racist God

Who says some of his children are chosen

And better than the rest

He gave them permission

To kill, maim and steal from their brothers

And use an iron fist

That was not fair


I am one of five million dispersed

People eye them with disgust

Frequently asked:

“why don’t you go home?”

Well…what can I say?

Your government approved kicking me out of my homeland

And forced you

To share your loaf of bread with me

Your media calls the freedom fighters terrorists

And the racist state a democracy

Turning a blind eye to thousands of Palestinians

Rotting inside Israeli jails

Palestinians in Gaza

Were starved to death

While the apartheid wall

And the illegitimate settlements

Are not challenged by the International Community

We are the legitimate owners of the land

Yet we were forced to shelter

In refugee camps for 63 years

Watching across the borders savages

Uprooting our trees

That is not fair


When Mary is forced

To go through 16 check points

Between Nazerath and Bethlehem

And still gives birth on the side of the road

For fabricated reasons of security

While the soldiers stand and stare

That is not fair


When children at schools

Do not know where Palestine is

Because Google forged the facts

Deleting its name from the maps

That is not fair


When I’m denied access to my home

And forced to move 56 times

Carrying my memories in my head

Knowing that I will never sleep

In my own bed

Or hang family pictures on a wall

That I can call mine

That is not fair


When the number of suitcases

Outnumbers the relatives who remained alive

When the number of true facts circulated

Are much less than those of lies

That is not fair


Here I am in exile alone

Lost everything I had

No family weddings to attend

No feasts to celebrate

My belongings are not that much

A mirror

To watch the grey invade my hair

And shreds of newspapers

Attributing the victims of terror

That is not fair







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