Riwaa Abuquta | 15-11-2019
For all writers, photographers, teachers and doctors in Gaza
Let students visit every corner of Palestine,
and dream of open schools.
Let me teach them about their land.
allow them to touch, smell, plant it.
Instead of seeing bodies of the dead on the sand.
Let me show them how to predict
rainy, sunny and cloudy days,
instead of nights filled with smoke
and drones that sound like agitated hornets.
Let me teach them how to invent
with their minds and hands,
instead of witnessing hands gone quiet.
Let me teach them how to write
stories of hope and achievement.
We don’t want more images of victims,
faces injured and grieving;
we tire of foreign press services
asking us to shoot the same bloody scenes
despite the risk,
only to disappear with the next ceasefire.
We dream of diving beneath the sea
to shoot nature’s bounty,
and photographing from above in the sky
to show the full beauty of Gaza.
We want the world to see
the love and longing for peace
in our children’s eyes.
In our hospitals we treat the wounded of war,
rushing from one surgery to another.
Losing more patients than we save,
blood on our hands and in our hearts
that will never fade or weather away.
We want to cure, soothe, heal.
We dream of having the time to research,
seeking discoveries that advance our field,
earning us a seat at global conferences
that we are allowed to attend.
Here I am!
I dream of writing about
succeeding and thriving.
I dream of waking up one day,
to the absence of gloom.
I am tired of all this sadness and grief,
this need for unending compassion.
I yearn to dream of books and school
and vacations—like you.
Additional mentoring was provided by Pam Bailey.
Posted: November 15, 2019
Mentor: Deborah Root