I don’t usually post poetry here because I have another site for that. Today is an exception, in honour of my dear late father.

I.

You started life a refugee, torn from your land and your olive trees

You started life a refugee, not a slave and yet not free

And as a child, much misery, high in the hills of Tripoli

Where you started life a refugee, and became a man too young, you see…

To help support your family, you did men’s work to earn a fee

And to serve the cause of liberty, you fought and bled in Tripoli…

But through the years, your destiny, whispered tales of what would come to be

For he who began a refugee, would soon find love and plant a tree

II.

With babes in hand, you crossed the sea. And traded bread for your dignity

You sacrificed with humility, and sold your sweat to grow your tree

And though still a child, my eyes could see, that you never lost your integrity…

You toiled hard, with serenity; your childhood dreams…just a memory

A winding path; that proved to be, full of love and pain, and family

A father’s love filled with sympathy, and the warrior spirit you imbued in me

A more kindred spirit there could never be, and then you disappeared so suddenly…

III.

Now I wake at night and, tragically, remember that you’re gone from me

And in the dark, my memory, plays with my mind and toys with me

For in my room, I swear I see, your loving eyes staring back at me

And if it’s a dream that lets this be, then don’t you dare awaken me…

Father, the loss of you has shaken me; and longing has not forsaken me

For my love for you, mistakenly, caused all my will to flee from me

While life’s perverse profanity, takes all that’s left of sanity…

IV.

But you did not die in vain, you see. For I will never forget what you gave to me

In my heart and soul lives a refugee that will wield a pen till all people are free

Through my blood and my ink, flows your legacy…and with these words, I honour thee:

For you are forever unmatched in your nobility. And forever loved by your family

And with the stroke of this pen, your memory, is etched into… eternity

 

~In Loving Memory of Maher Chehade: April 29 1953 – May 23 2013

baba-3

 

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