Dreams and homes lie together beneath rubble,
dust muting the bright greens and blues of a dream and a child’s sweater.
Blood is the color of a soul-scar. Only the bombs bloom now, red, orange and yellow poppies rising over the desolation.
Sirens and the sound of missiles wake us, echoing through vacant streets, as if shouting for people.
Mothers and kids crouch or fall to their knees, their hands and faces pale as the martyrs’.
Waiting through the silences ravages our hearts . . .
two hours? two minutes? two seconds?
Cheerful moments are pages torn from a book.
Sorrow is one long chapter in every Gazan story.
Another bomb explodes. Sharpnel flies.
Another home collapses. Another martyr leaves without farewell.
The artilleries fall silent,
but we exhaust our minds again with counting, two hours? two minutes? two seconds?
Today, a man walks in his friend’s funeral.
Tomorrow is his own funeral.
Breezes come from the sea.
Gaza cannot breathe.
The Great Omari and St Porphyry rise above green parks.
Gaza cannot see.
In Gaza, we smell only the smoke of rockets and bombs and the blood of martyrs.
Still, we hold our defiant and desperate smiles.
We claim the land shuddering under our feet and the sea with its waves of aching.