Friday, December 9, 2011

A Leader To Lead Us To Sing

(The following poem was written on the occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the Palestinian Nakba.)

As I watch the clouds outside my window flow
Flow across the sky rather slow
I can only wonder about the pace
The pace of independence without an ace
An ace is a leader who can move
Move a people into a groove
Nelson Mandela led the South Africans
Mahatma Gandhi led the Indians
Martin Luther King led the American Blacks
A leader of such a caliber our struggle lacks

At our Diaspora, we need to reflect
To see why there has been neglect
Why are we the only people not free?
Do we not look around and see
Independence the Moroccans did gain
The Sudanese did the same
Libya won its freedom from Italy
The Algerians fought the French rather mightily

What has happened in the last 60 years?
Surely, there have been many tears
Deir Yasseen lives within my soul
Sabra and Chatilla created a hole
A hole in my heart
Jenin took away any part
Any part left of my conscience
And left me without any patience  

In 1964 as the PLO was formed, we were hopeful
In June 1967, those hopes became sorrowful
In the 1970’s hijackings gave us a name
The label of terrorists caused us pain
Tel al Zaatar added more suffering
Our hopes were crumpling
Camp David only offered autonomy
The 1980’s provided sobriety
And we recognized the existence of the enemy
That handshake in 1993 lives in infamy
As the Peace Accords were signed on the White House lawn
We believed it was the beginning of a new dawn
Into complacency our minds did then dwell
Thinking the struggle was over and all was well
But as we were drafting and signing
The Israelis were cunning and planning

They gave us limited autonomy over populated parts
Divided us in Zones A, B and C on the charts
Then they controlled our movements within theses zones
And all they really gave us was bones
The time to travel between Beir Zeit and Ramallah
Has increased by 10 fold, Ya Allah!

The Israelis’ buy time
Using American taxpayer’s dime
The longer a peace agreement they elude
The more settlements become glued
All the while, our homes they demolish
In the press they polish
Polish the truth and hide the atrocities
As they torture our people and our cities
They build a wall as our hands are tied
A wall that President Carter called apartheid

The greatest hope we have known
Were the Children of the stone
But they were pre-empted in midstream
As secret negotiations in Stockholm came like a dream
Only to lead to a second Intifada episode
Only time will tell when we will again explode

In South Africa Mandela did write
Something he perceived to be quite right
He said the policies of the Apartheid Government of South Africa did impose
An armed struggle as the people fought and rose
Rose up against the oppression
And so must we against the occupation

To make salt Mahatma Gandhi did march to the sea
A non-violent movement he did oversee
A champion of the people was he
Fighting peacefully to set his people free

Non-violence was advocated by Martin Luther King
As a bus boycott to Montgomery Alabama he did bring
He was remindful of the past
As he proclaimed that one day his people will be “Free at last”

Where is our Mandela, Gandhi or King
Who can lead us out of the clouds and to sing
Biladi, Biladi, Biladi
Lecky Houbi Lee Wa Fouadi

(  © 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.)

                        Fadi Zanayed
                        May 23, 2008

1 comment:

  1. This is such an amazing poem. Absolutely beautiful brother Fadi.