one day, palestine will be free

by Aqeela Naqvi

mountains may move from their position
but you should not move from yours

mountains may move from their position
but you should not move from yours

mountains may move from their position
but you should not move from yours
not losing the firmness of your conviction
caught in the ash and smoke of war

do you not feel it moving through you?
do you not see it in your spirit’s sight?
do you not hear the millions crying,
their screams piercing through the night?

where is the fury of your blood?
where is the fire in your soul?
where is the lightning in your heart?
where is the thunder in your words?

how does your heart stay inside your chest
when black lives are taken with impunity
when sweet children’s eyes are closed forever
and the jury sets their killers free

when our thinkers are taken prisoner
our Sheikh Salmans and Zakzakys
when the House of Saud lays out executions
for any who speak truth to their tyranny

when our Malcolms and Muhammad Alis
are watered down from their revolutions
we profile picture them yet also any politician
whose pretty words distract from ugly resolutions

politicians whose circling drones
teach our children to pray for cloudy days
because their only protection is throwing stones
in the face of tanks and the missile’s blaze

when genocides that once screamed,
now whisper unpunished in delight
when wiped out are indigenous nations
when Shi’as are murdered in broad daylight

it has been said that if you hear
such things: men imprisoned, women raped
if a Muslim hears such news and dies of grief
by God, he cannot be blamed

so when today turns toward you
with the face of harrowing grief
when today is parched and looks
to drink pure waters of relief

when today stands at a crossroads
with blood heavy on its palms
will you direct it to destruction?
or tell it to lay down its arms?

will you allow your heart to be flesh
to see its struggling scars as strength
or will you see its scars as weakness
and choose hearts of stone instead?

when you look back i hope
that you will have chosen to be flesh
and when stone laughed and cut your skin
i hope this you will have said:

i am the strength of flesh
that runs on the greatest lion’s bones
whose blood will spill and topple
every oppressive tyrant’s throne

i am flesh that fells Goliath
with the undefeatable strength of soul
that speaks out against injustice
even if i stand alone

i am flesh and i choose not war,
not the hardness of corporate steel
i choose the ‘more arduous battle,’
i choose peace, where we heal

i am flesh and if there is anything
at all hard in me found
it is the strength that grips the hands
of those trampled to the ground

i am flesh and though not an expert
in the intricacy of foreign affairs
i know enough to question the words,
the media agendas reaching my ears

i may not have the ivy education
or the fancy certified degree
but i know one innocent death
is already one death too many

i know if my Prophet Muhammad were alive
what would be the issue on his mind?
without a doubt the first would be
the freedom of al-Quds, the liberation of Palestine

while us Muslims stand disunited deciding
whether to pray with crossed arms or not
those who would profit from our dissension
are plotting for ways to cut them off

take each others hands!
let us be smarter than the divide and conquer
brothers in faith or equals in humanity
when we stand together, we stand stronger

it is for the oppressed that we must strive
no matter their ethnicity or their creed
against oppressors rising as one
finding our greatest power in unity

so let us raise our fists to the sky
until there is no more pain to see
until tears no longer stain our eyes
until the skies no longer bleed

in resistance we will live,
peace is our slogan and our belief
and if in resistance we should die,
our song will be left for eternity

our dream will be kept alive
until truth becomes plain for all to see
one day justice will be recognized
one day we will find peace

one day our children will not die
their blood will not spill upon the streets
one day smoke will leave the skies
the scent of fire will leave the breeze

one day our mothers will not cry
one day our sons and daughters will be free
one day the dream of our fathers realized
one day we will march in victory

one day a golden sun will rise
one day from the river to the sea
one day from olive trees, the doves will fly
one day Palestine will be free.