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I belong there. I have many memories. I was born as everyone is born.

I have a mother, a house with many windows, brothers, friends, and a prison cell

with a chilly window! I have a wave snatched by seagulls, a panorama of my own.

I have a saturated meadow. In the deep horizon of my word, I have a moon,

a bird’s sustenance, and an immortal olive tree.

I have lived on the land before swords turned man into prey.

I belong there. When heaven mourns for her mother, I return heaven to her mother.

And I cry so that a returning cloud might carry my tears.

To break the rules, I have learned all the words needed for a trial by blood.

I have learned and dismantled all the words in order to draw from them a

Single word: Home.

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From Unfortunately, It Was Paradise by Poet Mahmoud Darwish (1941-2008). Mahmoud Darwish is the author of many collections of poetry and was considered Palestine’s most eminent poet. Learn more