A Poem from Gaza

If I must die let it be a tale
If I must die,
you must live
to tell my story
to sell my things
to buy a piece of cloth
and some strings,
(make it white with a long tail)
so that a child, somewhere in Gaza
while looking heaven in the eye
awaiting his dad who left in a blaze –
and bid no one farewell
not even to his flesh
not even to himself –
sees the kite,
my kite you made,
flying up above
and thinks for a moment an angel is there
bringing back love
If I must die
let it bring hope
let it be a tale

~ Refaat Alereer
Refaat Alereer was a Palestinian-born professor of English
at the Islamic University of Gaza.
On 6 December 2023, Alareer was killed in an Israeli airstrike in northern Gaza,
along with his brother, brother’s son, sister, and her three children.

One Comment

  1. Thanks for this. It is deeply moving. I will read it and include the footnote in a Christian service I’m involved in this weekend.

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