Earth Presses Against Us by Mahmoud Darwish
Earth is pressing against us, trapping us in the final passage
To pass through we pull off our limbs
Earth is squeezing us. If only we were wheat, we might die yet live
If only it were our mother so she might temper us with mercy
If only we were pictures of rocks held in our dreams like mirrors
We glimpse faces in their final battle for the soul, of those who will be killed
by the last living among us. We mourn their children’s feast.
We saw faces of those who would throw our children out of the windows
of this last space. A star to burnish our mirrors.
Where should we go after the last border? Where should birds fly after the last sky?
Where should plants sleep after the last breath of air?
We write our names with crimson mist!
We end the hymn with our flesh
Here we will die. Here, in the final passage.
Here or there, our blood will plant olive trees