On Your Own (Lewahdak): Song for Besieged Gaza

The song Lewahdak (On Your Own) celebrates Palestinian culture and emphasizing its organic relation with resistance. (Photo: Video Grab)

By Haidar Eid  

This song has been released at a cultural event in Gaza titled ‘A World of Our Own: Besiege Your Siege’, celebrating Palestinian culture and emphasizing its organic relation with resistance.

Palestinian cultural figures were present in spirit, Ghassan Kanafani, Mahmoud Darwish, Edward Said, Fadwa Touqan, and Rim Banna—amongst others.

The event was attended by hundreds of people as it included Dabkeh, songs of resistance, drawing, poetry, and speeches from artists and cultural figures from the Arab World and South Africa, Ibrahim Nasrallah, Oumaima Khalil, Nai Barghouti, Jeremy Karodia, amongst others.

The event closed with the song, On Your Own, the lyrics of which were written by the Egyptian-Canadian activist/poet Ehab Lotayef for Gaza.

It was sent to Haidar Eid, from Gaza, who together with local musicians transformed it into a song.

This is a rough translation that does not do justice to the beauty of the poem:

On your own (Lewahdak)

If life goes harsh on you

If the light disappears and darkness overrules

If kind people are mistreated/oppressed and villains override

And right and wrong mix up/ and we get lost between right and wrong

It’s only your voice

That brings out the light

Speaking truth (to power)

If your people let you down and your friends are coward

Avoiding and fearing the truth

Amidst atrocities and under siege

You, on your own, have no choice

But to raise your voice

To call upon the light at the end of the tunnel

speaking truth (to power)

– Haidar Eid is an Associate Professor in the Department of English Literature at the Al-Aqsa University, in the Gaza Strip. He contributed this article to The Palestine Chronicle.

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