Letter composed on the corner of 26th street

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It has come to this, 
a bitter ebb growing along once rosy apples
some of which lie bruised on the ground
while others
more or less faithful continue to hang by a thread.
This is how we are as neighbours,
every shadow,
every ache
and every bullet whispers our name.

What does it mean to become older?
What does time imply when it compares itself to a river?
Shouldn’t we be aware of media, its underlying viciousness
and role in shaping our ideas,
shouldn’t we be the ones striving for change
in behaviour?

To the ones who fling hatred across from both sides of the border
as stones,

I will tell you what to hate
you can hate the air burdened with smoke,
the barren skies
who shun the cries of those who loathe,
you can hate indifference partially obscured by the blood-red sun.
We can end this violence
and acrimony, so that later on there will be no more burials
and the living
would no longer have to approach a corpse.

This March,
come let us wield poems that carry peace as wildflowers
rising from the earth,
pay attention to chaotic white in clouds that promise
true warmth,
we were separated from something indescribable back then,
let disheveled grass slowly turn lush again,
let us join together in pursuit of forming a better future.


Photo credits: Katarzyna Kmiecik – Cityscapes

Posted for Midweek Motif @ Poets United

28 Replies to “Letter composed on the corner of 26th street”

  1. ” let us wield poems that carry peace”
    Al the imagery in this poem lends poignancy to this–what is rotten and what is barely alive, and your vision of what could still rise. Wow!

  2. Love this . I like the call to a change in attitude that hopefully leads to action towards peace. I like that you make this immediate by naming the month. Now is the time.

  3. My goodness you are passionate about your neighbors. Not just this march, but let us write our hearts. I am not much on neighborliness. Neither are my neighbors. We respect each other’s privacy.

    1. … ❤️ I truly am and feel that enough is enough, we as nations should move forward rather than fall apart. And yes, I agree with you about respecting each other’s privacy. Thank you so much, Toni 😀 so glad the poem resonated with you ❤️

  4. What a marvellous poem you have written here Sanaa. Sadly civil and cross border unrest is fuelled by weapons manufacturers that encourage hate with promise of strength benefitting only themselves. If only we could embrace our differences allowing each to find their own path without violence. One day perhaps.

  5. The poem has a beautiful fragrance that wafts across the borders embracing all. But as long as there is politics and pettiness and more recently an omnipotent media hate songs will continue. And most importantly weapons have to sell. Ha, war or terrorism is a fab business. But POETS can really make a difference. So words we must weave. Beautiful Sanaa, as always.

    1. Awww gosh! ❤️ Thank you so much, Sumana 😀 so glad you liked it! ❤️

      (and thank you for the lovely prompt) 🌹

  6. That is such a pertinent metaphor, Sanaa:
    ‘a bitter ebb growing along once rosy apples
    some of which lie bruised on the ground’.
    I can’t imagine living in a neighbourhood where bullets whisper our names and hatred is flung like stones. I love the hope and defiance in the ines:
    ‘come let us wield poems that carry peace as wildflowers
    rising from the earth’.

    1. … ❤️ You’re absolutely right. It will take every individual effort to bring about that change and I will not give up until that day comes. Thank you so much, Cressida 🙂 so glad the poem resonated with you ❤️

  7. It seems “Civility” should now be spelled “Eivility”.
    __ Perhaps our deep reliance on technology has sapped our humanity, so often a look back will create… a finer a step forward.

    Look back
    when peoples’ hearts
    often opened with tears,
    that cured the fails of they, and we;
    new sight.

  8. An inspiring call to action, Sanaa! I love theses lines “…come let us wield poems that carry peace as wildflowers rising from the earth…” . Oh yes, I quite agree!

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