Stolen Joys – A Poem

A Gaza morning. (Photo: Via Aljazeera. file)

By Nour El-Borno – Gaza


Moons shine through her eyes

As she walks past her house:

Here, she once laughed;

There, she once cried.


“I remember,” she whispers.


The dark hours that once took over

Are now gone in the past,

But so are the happy moments

She once had.


“What if it was all a dream?”

Faint words escape her mouth.


The flowers she gardened,

Sunned and watered

Lost in the winter of acid rain

When raids of autumn

Fell on her head:

Thorned petals destroying

Everything she held dear.


Her brother, five year old, was six nevermore;

Her sister, 20 days, was never one month old.

All she had, her father and her mother,

Were beyond her reach:

Only in dreams of long nights’ sleep.


“I remember,” she weeps.


Despite the joys and the laughs

Of the twenty years that had passed,

Something within her heart

Never forgot who she once was:

A daughter and a sister and much more

An owner of a house

That was now gone.


“I lived here,” she cried,

“My soul still lingers, though;

I lived here,” she gazed

And moved past her fresh wrinkles,

And moved past everything she is

And held on to what was stolen from her:

Her family, her home, her childhood

And a lot more.

– Nour El-Borno is a published poet and a graduate of English literature at the Islamic University of Gaza. She contributed this poem to 

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