اللهم احمي سوريا
FREE PALESTINE ‘Old times...and new‘مـهـآ | أحنُّ إلى خبزِ أمّي وقهوةِ أمّي ولمسةِ أمّي ...




 أحنُّ إلى خبزِ أمّي 
وقهوةِ أمّي 
ولمسةِ أمّي 
وتكبرُ فيَّ الطفولةُ 
يوماً على صدرِ يومِ 
وأعشقُ عمري لأنّي 
إذا متُّ 
أخجلُ من دمعِ أمّي 
* * * 

Darwish has many poems that are considered very strong, but I have always thought the poem he wrote to his mother is one of the strongest poems ever written for a mother. In this poem Mother is used as a metaphor for his homeland, for Palestine.
He starts the poem with a very iconic subject in Middle Eastern culture: Bread.….
                                                    poem”mother” by Mahmoud DarwishMy Mother  
I long for my mother’s bread
My mother’s coffee
Her touch
Childhood memories grow up in me
Day after day
I must be worth my life
At the hour of my death
Worth the tears of my mother. 
And if I come back one day
Take me as a veil to your eyelashes
Cover my bones with the grass
Blessed by your footsteps
Bind us together
With a lock of your hair
With a thread that trails from the back of your dress
I might become immortal
Become a God
If I touch the depths of your heart. 
If I come back
Use me as wood to feed your fire
As the clothesline on the roof of your house
Without your blessing
I am too weak to stand. 
I am old
Give me back the star maps of childhood
So that I
Along with the swallows
Can chart the path
Back to your waiting nest.
 …
The national poet of Palestine, Mahmoud Darwish, passed away in 2008 in Houston, TX, from complications related to heart surgery.  Darwish, like many other Palestinians, had personal experience with house arrest, hardship and exile.  During his life he won many literary awards and was celebrated the world over; he was a voice for the Arab world.  The most important metaphor, as well as recurring theme, in his poems was Palestine.  He uses this metaphor to portray his feelings towards Eden, exile, and the anguish of being deprived of his homeland.
I have read Mahmoud Darwish’s poetry and translated several of his poems from English to Persian.  His poems are deeply emotional and touching in terms of being able to journey to the common and ordinary person’s deep desires and sorrows, especially the people of his beloved homeland.
Darwish has many poems that are considered very strong, but I have always thought the poem he wrote to his mother is one of the strongest poems ever written for a mother. In this poem Mother is used as a metaphor for his homeland, for Palestine.
He starts the poem with a very iconic subject in Middle Eastern culture: Bread.
I long for my mother’s bread
Bread is a metaphor for human survival.  Bread in this instance is used as a metaphor for balance and peace, and finally as a metaphor for love.  In many cultures of the world bread is considered holy and respected in ritual, especially in destitute countries.  He also used bread as a metaphor for the kindness and love of mothers, as usually mothers prepare both the food and the dinner table.  He uses longing for bread and coffee and mother’s touch only to reiterate how much he misses his mother and country.
The poet’s expressions of love and respect for his mother reach their height when he writes:I must be worth my life
At the hour of my death
Worth the tears of my mother.
The prescient point in the third line is astounding in that Darwish actually died while his mother was still alive.  These three lines made global headline news in his obituary on BBC.  Darwish wanted to be worthy of his mother’s tears when he died. Or again he wants to be worthy of his people, his countrymen.
In several lines in the body of the poem his commanding use of simile is amazing:
Take me as a veil 
…
Use me as wood to feed your fire
as the clothesline on the roof of your house
His use of the veil represents closeness to his mother’s eye lashes. This is the poet’s desire to be close to his mother, and to be of use to her. He states this desire to be useful to his mother in more certain terms by saying ‘use me as a wood for your fire.’ This is the fire which will warm his mother and subsequently be used to bake bread.
At the end of this poem he tells his mother that without her he is old and weak: Without your blessing
I am too weak to stand.
I am old
He then ends the poem with a request from his mother:  
Give me back the star maps of childhood.
He needs the map so that he can go back to his childhood,
 to his mother’s nest, to his country.
So that I
Along with the swallows
Can chart the path
Back to your waiting nest.
The overpowering strength of his emotion in this poem, and the way he walks the reader step by step through his longing with the use of vocabularies such as bread, fire, coffee, swallows, wood, hair, heart, immortal, and touch make this poem very emotional and accessible to every reader that has known the love of a mother and motherland and thus is eternal.




أحنُّ إلى خبزِ أمّي

وقهوةِ أمّي

ولمسةِ أمّي

وتكبرُ فيَّ الطفولةُ

يوماً على صدرِ يومِ

وأعشقُ عمري لأنّي

إذا متُّ

أخجلُ من دمعِ أمّي

* * *

Darwish has many poems that are considered very strong, but I have always thought the poem he wrote to his mother is one of the strongest poems ever written for a mother. In this poem Mother is used as a metaphor for his homeland, for Palestine.
He starts the poem with a very iconic subject in Middle Eastern culture: Bread.
….


poem”mother” by Mahmoud Darwish
My Mother

I long for my mother’s bread
My mother’s coffee
Her touch
Childhood memories grow up in me
Day after day
I must be worth my life
At the hour of my death
Worth the tears of my mother.
And if I come back one day
Take me as a veil to your eyelashes
Cover my bones with the grass
Blessed by your footsteps
Bind us together
With a lock of your hair
With a thread that trails from the back of your dress
I might become immortal
Become a God
If I touch the depths of your heart.
If I come back
Use me as wood to feed your fire
As the clothesline on the roof of your house
Without your blessing
I am too weak to stand.
I am old
Give me back the star maps of childhood
So that I
Along with the swallows
Can chart the path
Back to your waiting nest.


The national poet of Palestine, Mahmoud Darwish, passed away in 2008 in Houston, TX, from complications related to heart surgery. Darwish, like many other Palestinians, had personal experience with house arrest, hardship and exile. During his life he won many literary awards and was celebrated the world over; he was a voice for the Arab world. The most important metaphor, as well as recurring theme, in his poems was Palestine. He uses this metaphor to portray his feelings towards Eden, exile, and the anguish of being deprived of his homeland.
I have read Mahmoud Darwish’s poetry and translated several of his poems from English to Persian. His poems are deeply emotional and touching in terms of being able to journey to the common and ordinary person’s deep desires and sorrows, especially the people of his beloved homeland.
Darwish has many poems that are considered very strong, but I have always thought the poem he wrote to his mother is one of the strongest poems ever written for a mother. In this poem Mother is used as a metaphor for his homeland, for Palestine.
He starts the poem with a very iconic subject in Middle Eastern culture: Bread.
I long for my mother’s bread
Bread is a metaphor for human survival. Bread in this instance is used as a metaphor for balance and peace, and finally as a metaphor for love. In many cultures of the world bread is considered holy and respected in ritual, especially in destitute countries. He also used bread as a metaphor for the kindness and love of mothers, as usually mothers prepare both the food and the dinner table. He uses longing for bread and coffee and mother’s touch only to reiterate how much he misses his mother and country.
The poet’s expressions of love and respect for his mother reach their height when he writes:

I must be worth my life
At the hour of my death
Worth the tears of my mother.


The prescient point in the third line is astounding in that Darwish actually died while his mother was still alive. These three lines made global headline news in his obituary on BBC. Darwish wanted to be worthy of his mother’s tears when he died. Or again he wants to be worthy of his people, his countrymen.
In several lines in the body of the poem his commanding use of simile is amazing:

Take me as a veil

Use me as wood to feed your fire
as the clothesline on the roof of your house
His use of the veil represents closeness to his mother’s eye lashes. This is the poet’s desire to be close to his mother, and to be of use to her. He states this desire to be useful to his mother in more certain terms by saying ‘use me as a wood for your fire.’ This is the fire which will warm his mother and subsequently be used to bake bread.
At the end of this poem he tells his mother that without her he is old and weak:

Without your blessing
I am too weak to stand.
I am old
He then ends the poem with a request from his mother:
Give me back the star maps of childhood.
He needs the map so that he can go back to his childhood,
to his mother’s nest, to his country.
So that I
Along with the swallows
Can chart the path
Back to your waiting nest.

The overpowering strength of his emotion in this poem, and the way he walks the reader step by step through his longing with the use of vocabularies such as bread, fire, coffee, swallows, wood, hair, heart, immortal, and touch make this poem very emotional and accessible to every reader that has known the love of a mother and motherland and thus is eternal.


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