I Am Not The Same

Jasmine in Moonlight

A kite that flies over heads
in attempts to rebirth a forgotten ritual
in a place that glorifies tradition
to break the sky’s dominance.

An olive tree keen in silence,
ripped away from its honorable root.

A surface that burns these bare feet.

Dreams blown away like sand.
Wishes for a new, productive year
Or just one collective wish to stop the war with not one loss more.

Handing my father yellow cartons of a humanitarian aid package,
to light them and make hot bread;
setting them aside in hope of returning home
and collecting our scattered clothes.

The image of extended hands,
crowds of people who are presenting their ID cards
to resign their personal information in a way of getting any grant,
sinks inside.

Conventions that expose how brutal the world is.

Missing a stroll under a brightest moon
On a street edged by jasmine’s scent.
At dusk, the time when I’d lay under the shelf to pick up a book.

It has been a long time since I saw my best friend
and we sat together in the first seat in a lecture hall,
gossiping about someone who made us mad.

I was trying to comfort her the first time
I experienced the death of someone I loved.
I couldn’t believe it. I’m still waiting for this nightmare to end.

We’re souls of emotions,
not only beings in need
of food and water.

Men in a hurry to save what remains dry under a damp tent.

Children rushing with containers to feed a starved family beyond a tent.

I see my family every day
but I miss them so much, as no one ever is still the same.
Even I am not the same.

Tala Albanna

Tala Albanna was born and raised in Gaza. She is a law student, a writer, and an activist in the human rights and environmental fields. She has a strong passion to discover more about the world of animals and nature. She likes to read and she also embroiders (tatreez) in her free time as a way to bond with her ancestral home in Jaffa

Photo by Aamer Almutawa

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