U.S. troops liberated death camps

in the decade before my birth.

My parents didn’t use the word fascism.

But I knew what it meant.

Only two years before my birth,

Israel was declared a state.

My parents didn’t use the word, Nakba.

And I didn’t know what it meant.

The catastrophe for the Palestinians

was blamed only on their leaders.

Israel’s occupation,

Biblically vindicated.

When I understood the Nakba,

the homes destroyed,

the olive groves plundered,

the people cast out,

I felt alone.

When I read about the daily indignities

in the prison that is Gaza,

I felt alone.

When Israelis were massacred,

I felt alone.

When Jews have a right to return,

that is denied to Palestinians,

I feel alone.

In the privilege of my loneliness,

I talk to my grandchildren

about the Nakba.

And I look for miracles,

Lonesome Israelis and Palestinians,

Jews and Muslims

in that place of fire,

sharing their trauma,

their land,

their dreams,

their destiny.