By Samah Sabawi
I stand between my shame and relief
The missiles missed this time
Truth is, they didn’t’ miss entirely
Someone’s house is destroyed
but not that house I know so well
Someone’s family is grieving
but not the one whose name I carry
between my shame and relief
I tell myself
‘this flesh, torn and scattered,
is not flesh I have ever embraced’.
I soothe myself,
‘Nor are these small lifeless hands
the ones with a crayon I’ve traced’
The missiles missed,
those whose names are engraved on my lips
They didn’t stop
those hearts beating in my chest
But I must confess
Every time the bombs fall on Gaza
I search for answers
Where did they strike?
Which street did they blow up?
Which neighborhood did they destroy?
Which lives did they steal?
Aware of my guilt I whisper a prayer
Dear God, please don’t let it be the ones I know.
Dear God, please don’t let it be the ones I love.
And when it’s over
And while the less fortunate ones weep
I stand between shame and relief
Thank God my loved ones are spared
– Samah Sabawi is a Palestinian writer and poet from Gaza. She is currently residing in Australia. She contributed this article to PalestineChronicle.com.