Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Humiliated In The Shackles

By Sami al-Hajj

When I heard pigeons cooing in the trees,
Hot tears covered my face.
When the lark chirped, my thoughts composed
A message for my son.
Mohammad, I am afflicted.
In my despair, I have no one but Allah for comfort.
The oppressors are playing with me,
As they move freely around the world.
They ask me to spy on my countrymen,
Claiming it would be a good deed.
They offer me money and land,
And freedom to go where I please.
Their temptations seize
My attention like lightning in the sky.
But their gift is an empty snake,
Carrying hypocrisy in its mouth like venom,
They have monuments to liberty
And freedom of opinion, which is well and good.
But I explained to them that
Architecture is not justice.
America, you ride on the backs of orphans,
And terrorize them daily.
Bush, beware.
The world recognizes an arrogant liar.
To Allah I direct my grievance and my tears.
I am homesick and oppressed.
Mohammad, do not forget me.
Support the cause of your father, a God-fearing man.
I was humiliated in the shackles.
How can I now compose verses? How can I now write?
After the shackles and the nights and the suffering and the tears,
How can I write poetry?
My soul is like a roiling sea, stirred by anguish,
Violent with passion.
I am a captive, but the crimes are my captors'.
I am overwhelmed with apprehension.
Lord, unite me with my son Mohammad.
Lord, grant success to the righteous.

Sami Al-Hajj is a Sudanese national. An Al jazeera journalist and cameraman arrested in Afghanistan, he continues to be held without charge in Camp Delta at Guantánamo Bay. He has been subjected to torture and denied access to medical treatment, including dental care and eyeglasses. Al-Hajj had throat cancer in 1998, and was prescribed a course of drugs for the rest of his life. He has not been provided with these drugs since being taken into US custody. The Mohammad mentioned in the poem is his 5-year-old son.

2 Comments:

Anonymous ungovernable said...

argh!
lets take away the basic dignity of all decent men, so their sons can rightfully hate US.
Guantanamo makes a mockery of human rights.
the king of the world is a tailless monkey with vultures on his shoulders.
"western world"
got it's foot in the turd.
knee deep. or was it to the neck?
i'm sailing my ship of fools while all i do is feel.
argh!

12:48 pm  
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