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Palestine in America Inc NFP is a nonprofit organization dedicated to educating people in the United States about Palestinian-American issues using journalism and cultural events. Palestine in America hosts articles, short stories, poems written by or about Palestinians. We produce our print magazine quarterly and hosts educational and cultural events.

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Palipalooza opening act’s tribute to the Nakba

Palipalooza opening act’s tribute to the Nakba

Yara Daoud, one of the opening acts for Palipalooza, wrote the poem below as a tribute to the Nakba. Today marks the 69th anniversary of the Nakba, also commonly known as the Palestinian Catastrophe.

Daoud is a 22 year old Palestinian spoken word artist from Chicago. She has preformed throughout the Chicagoland area. She has focused her work on connecting all people of color and their joint struggles.

ZARNOOKA 1948

ما هو الوطن ؟

هو الشوق إلى الموت من أجل أن تعيد الحق والأرض. ليس الوطن أرضا. ولكنه الأرض والحق معا. الحق معك، والارض معهم

his hands were clenched so tight

when he raised his head from the dirt his words fell off his tongue like raindrops

ما هو الوطن ؟

the words stung more than the scars on his hands

his ears were still ringing from the explosion

see my father just wanted to go to school that day

but the Israeli soldiers had a different plan for him

they blew up his neighbor’s home along with their lives

and forced him to carry the burning remains of rubber and metal in his bare hands

with a gun to his head his skin began to melt as they began to laugh

 الحق معك يا بابا ، والارض معهم

the roots to his country dug deeper than the roots of his stolen olive trees

الحق معك يا بابا ، والارض معهم

may 27th 1948

zarnooka, Palestine was ethnically cleansed 25,189 days ago

my grandmother was forced out of her home with her 10 children

her soul molded within the bricks

her heart within the memories held between cemented walls

her heritage lied within the homes around her

and her life

her life is now an abyss of rubble and broken stone

الحق معك يا ستو، والارض معهم

my soul is bleeding ink

seeping into your skin

try to knead me out of your pores

i will still be faded

submerged in your being by rock and olive

a stain or an enduring resistance.

i am 1948

i am a mirror

this pain is a mirror

i am a mirror of ancestors of hope and tatreez and zayt and grandmothers shashe

i am a mirror of rock and stone and dove and handalah

i am a mirror of grandfathers keffiyeh and hatta

i am a mirror of every massacre of every year Palestine has cut their hands on stone

this pain is a mirror

a pain

a mirror of remembrance

a mirror of my home, my heart, my blood, my veins, my soul

i am sick

i am so sick of mirrors

all I see is gray and red that my skin continues to absorb

and as I stare into this mirror

Palestine grabs me by the throat and asks me

ما هوالحق ؟

ما هوالحق؟

ما هوالحق؟

as I shout I try to find contentment

but how do you find peace when your soil has been fertilized by the bodies of babies

are you listening?

my soil has been fertilized by the bodies of mothers

can you feel this?

my soil has been fertilized by the bodies of innocence

the bodies of fighters

my soil is screaming

هم الأرض بس ما هو ألحق؟

ya Watani

i carry your graveyards in my skin

i pray for the 206 bones that break within me over and over and over again

showcasing trauma buried within my atoms that my ancestors have left long before my mother brought me into this world

my body tries to find you and my people the sincerest of apologies

but only regret leaves a hallow trail upon my lips

اسفه

i am sorry

i am sorry for my heart is in an uproar.

سدو

although, I was never able to touch your skin or hear your voice hell you weren’t even given the chance to raise my father

he lost you at 5 years old

الحق معك يا سدو، والارض معهم

bring me over this bridge and bake me into this bread

because I can taste the seeds of love fresh in this simsim

on this khubiz that carries more than just comfort food

lay me across this taboon

the coals a fiery blaze like this Palestinian heart shackled against your appropriation, your murder, your genocide, your beatings, your cold dead hearts

i said lay me down, bake me, I will never surrender

ألحق معنا

ألحق معنا

ألحق معنا

لا اله الا الله

ألحق معنا

أنا اسفه يا فلسطين

we have the media trying to tell your story and I see your tears with every word they utter

and for the hypocrites tongue your free Palestine’s are numb to my ears

i cannot hear the empty cries of the western world anymore

their screams for Palestine are stitched together with no knowledge of your rich history

im hear to grab the mic and scream

my bones shake and fall and shake and fall and resemble back together and say

فلسطيني

فلسطيني انا اسمي فلسطيني

نقشت اسمي علي كل المياديني

بخط بارز يسمو علي كل العناويني

حروف اسمي

تلاحقني تعايشني تغذيني

your salt water tears have created a sea with the most ironic name

the Dead Sea

where bodies digress within strenuous waters

so you cried tears of salt for us

for cleansing

for purifying

for relief

you cup your hands filling it with the seas water and slowly release it over our skin with a promise of healing

your veins are cut to exposure yet you take them back and sew them onto your clothing and call it tatreez

they broke down your cities so you grabbed the rubble and rocks and used them as a symbol of strength and resistance

for every grain of sand

for every grain of salt

for every ounce of Palestine left

for the ones who feel this pain

for the ones who lost

put your fists in the air

ألحق معنا

for the hungry

for the jailed

for the mourners

for the tears

for the dirt stained cheeks

for pupils carrying pools of tears

it is for the millions of Palestinians with hearts flying with the doves in the sky

the ones with families looking down on us from heaven

the ones that have to utter their sisters name as they wept over her dead corpse

this is for the baby boy with tears running down his cheeks as he holds his families photo to his chest

pushing and squeezing it so hard as if he tried with such force he could jam it back into his flesh and be with them once more

this is for the Palestinians that lost

the ones that continue to fight

to resist

to endure

this is for my family that painted me Palestine the moment I was born

for every ribcage with Palestine dripping from their lungs

for Allah (SWT) to accept the lives of my people

الارض بالجنه انشالله

so I ask you

ما هو الوطن ؟

SOCIAL MEDIA HANDLES:

SOUNDCLOUD: https://soundcloud.com/user-630594763

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/yara.daoud.7921

INSTAGRAM: @yaradaoudpoetry

TWITTER: @yaradaoudpoetry

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Chicago’s Palestinian community stands firm with political prisoners

Chicago’s Palestinian community stands firm with political prisoners

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