Monday, May 10, 2010

Keep the Hope: An Armenian Genocide Memoriam

An Object with a Subject

A small plastic bag
Full of precious soil
From the occupied
Lands of my forefathers
Sits on the top shelf
Of my library.

A friend of mine
Brought as a surprise gift,
On her return
From Eastern Turkey,
Historic Armenia.

That handful of soil
Reminds me.
The drops of silemt tears
Of my mother and father .
It reminds me.
The persecutions and massacres
Of 1.5 million Armenias
95 years ago, as if yesterday.

It reminds me.
People leaving their homes
walking barefoot under the bruning sun
Into the unknown
Into the valleys of death.

The silent soil in my library
Looks at me
Inspiring me with hope
That those lost lands
Will be ours again.
"When and how?" I ask.
"Keep the hope," it says.

What a sweet hope
With which to live.

Jeanette Kassouny is an essayist and poet member of the LAUSD North Hollywood's "Tea and Tales Writing Group."

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