Friday, December 9, 2011

Gaining Political Awareness

On November 21, 1967 at O’Hare Airport we landed
Onto a land filled with milk and honey that did flow
To greet us, all our relatives had banded
As little white flakes came down, my first snow

I remember the election of 1968
Death that year was howling like the moon
In April the television showed horses pulling a coffin in a crate
And then I watched as Bobby was shot in June

I wanted to know everything around
I watched the news and acquired knowledge
Seeing MLK and RFK slain did hound
Hound me to absorb compassion’s edge

In school the speech teacher took away my accent
As three beautiful smart girls inspired me
Their presence in my life meant
Meant a turning point you see

By third grade I knew what I wanted to be
A lawyer was going to be my deal
Being aware of my identity
I was beginning to feel

In sixth grade the Jewish teacher wanted me to engage
Dying a t-shirt light blue and wear a pants colored white
To sing Hava Nagela during the Spring Assembly on stage
I refused because I knew this was not right

For music I earned an F grade
Proudest grade I would receive
She knew not what she had made
In me a political activist she did conceive

As hijackings dominated the news
Political awareness came my way
As I was forming my political views
Listening to what my elders had to say

President Carter presented a human rights campaign
This gave me hope that he would correct a wrong
But with each Middle East event frustration turned into pain
And I knew that the days, weeks, months and years would be long

                                                Fadi Zanayed
                                                December 4, 2011
                                                1:35 am

(  © Copyright, Fadi Zanayed.  Publication or distribution of this material is allowed provided its content is not altered and the source and its author are cited.)

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