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A Poem - To My Community With Love

I love reading and writing. I came to writing late in life and discovered a world where I feel like a fish in the water.

A Pilgrimage Walk.

A Pilgrimage Walk.

Sitting alone in the dark

With lots of time on my hands

I wonder what more I can do

For a community in distress.

The stories of greed and neglect

Remind me of an old folk tale

That of a Muslim woman who was wronged

and had lost hope of finding justice.

One day, she took her veil off

And went into an assembly of men.

As a roar of outrage came up

Outrage at the insolence of a woman

Who dared show up so naked among men,

She stood defiantly among them and said,

“I would have kept the veil if I saw here a man”.

The roar of outrage subsided

The men looked down in shame,

At the mettle of a strong woman

Whom they could not blame.

As taught by my mother and grandmother

In times of distress and need

You put aside all anger and resentment

And do the right and good deed.

The distress and despair of my community

Could move mountains if they so wish

If only their faith weren’t tested so frequently.

Looking at their reality

My heart goes out to them

How much more can they bear

However resilient they were.

Long before the current COVID-19 crisis

The Lebanese people in Lebanon faced an unclimbable mountain

With little tools and inadequate styles

To face health, economy, and societal problems.

Trying to grasp at straws

of hope and needed changes

What they hoped for and expected

Is so far from ideal

That some feel dazed

While others feel enraged.

Hope should never go out of style

Hope is what must be kept alive

The will to overcome challenges

Must be maintained steadfast.

‘Do not give up’

Is easy for me to say,

I don’t have mouths to feed

With little or no income,

I don’t sit in despair

Wondering what tomorrow will bring,

I can only pray, hope and

Do what I can when I can.

If one day the people wanted life

Fate can only acquiesce

The chains would be broken, and

The night would make way to the day.

© 2020 Liliane Najm

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