Unfortunately, it was paradise

We Journey Towards a Home

by Mahmoud Darwish

We journey towards a home not of our flesh.

Its chestnut trees are not of our bones.

Its rocks are not like goats in the mountain hymn.

The pebbles’ eyes are not lilies.

We journey towards a home that does not halo our heads with a special sun.

Mythical women applaud us.

A sea for us, a sea against us.

When water and wheat are not at hand, eat our love and drink our tears…

There are mourning scarves for poets.  

A row of marble statues will lift our voice.

And an urn to keep the dust of time away from our souls.  

Roses for us and against us.

You have your glory, we have ours.

Of our home we see only the unseen: our mystery.

Glory is ours: a throne carried on feet torn by roads that led to every home but our own!

The soul must recognize itself in its very soul, or die here.

English translation by Munir Akash

Paintings by Vuillard

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