The Earth Is Closing On Us (English)

Translation/Interpretation/Caption Text: 

Artist's Statement:

This image is a very well known iconic one of the Nakba. Images of the Nakba are always haunting. What I wanted to say in a visual language is that the Nakba reaches far into the past and at the same time is ongoing and every day for those in the West Bank and Gaza, for Palestinians in the camps in Jordan, Lebanon and Syria. The words are from a poem, "The Earth Is Closing on Us", by Mahmoud Darwish:

The earth is closing on us, pushing us through the last passage, and

we tear off our limbs to pass through.

The earth is squeezing us. I wish we were its wheat so we could die

and live again. I wish the earth was our mother

So she’d be kind to us. I wish we were pictures on the rocks for our dreams to carry as mirrors.

We saw the faces of those to be killed by the last of us in the last defense of the soul.

We cried over their children’s feast. We saw the faces of those who’ll

throw our children Out of the windows of the last space. Our star will hang up in mirrors.

Where should we go after the last frontiers? Where should the birds fly after the last sky?

Where should the plants sleep after the last breath of air? We will write our names with scarlet steam.

We will cut off the head of the song to be finished by our flesh.

We will die here, here in the last passage. Here and here our blood will plant its olive tree.