When will it be enough?
Bombs drop like rain Brown bodies with brown souls cannot dance between the 2000-pound droplets They are too busy picking up little arms Little feet Little ears blown off by shrapnel Lifeless bodies are pulled from rubble in frantic men’s hands Like Mamie Till one father lifts a dusty girl To the camera. She hangs suspended between impotent hands Head limp Arms open As if to beckon the world to see… What they’ve done to me. Her name was Mariam. See her gray face. See her blue lips. See her shredded left leg. Her people are from the land of milk and honey But she was born in a prison Her crime? To be born … at all This morning, Mariam lay awake; staring at stained glass Eyes open, she dreamt of a place without death She dreamt of a home she’d never known with water and food and olive trees everywhere Her brother Abdel scrunched closer to her in their last moments of quiet before another day of death. He lay his head on the ground of the church yard where their family had found shelter last night. Now, after the quiet, Mariam looks down from the nether place Her mother holds Abdel’s crinkled arm close to her chest. The rest of his body is nowhere. Suspended in her father’s shaking hands, Mariam sees herself dangling like the Jesus in the colored windows that promised safety last night. She whispers to us from Allah’s embrace … I am number 10,000 Can I be enough?
This poem was inspired by current events. All names, characters, and incidents portrayed in this poem are fictitious. No identification with actual persons (living or deceased), places and buildings is intended or should be inferred.
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President and founder of FreedomRoad.us, Lisa Sharon Harper is a writer, podcaster and public theologian. Lisa is author of critically acclaimed book, Fortune: How Race Broke My Family And The World—And How To Repair It All.