Monday, 19 November 2012


Tell me why
I cannot see the sky for smoke
I cannot breathe the air.

Tell me why
The bombs fall around me
My children scream from their wounds
How they are guilty
Of whatever it is we are being punished for.

Tell me why
You who have stolen our land, pushed us into ghettoes, strangled our economy, starved and maltreated us,
Turned us into your prisoners from the time we are born to the time we die
Who have made life for us hell,

Why should we not fight back against you? Why should we not fight with sticks and stones, blood and tears
Against your metal monsters, your apartheid walls, your pretences and your lies?
You have all the power, we have nothing

Except right on our side.

Yes you can kill us, and we will lose
Each battle, but we will fight
Because we are human, and you have forgotten that
Just as your oppressors seventy years ago
Chose to forget that you are human.

Tell me, do we frighten you
With our powerlessness
With our lack of anything but our dignity
Our pride, which you have not shackled
Have not beaten down?

Do our sticks and stones frighten you so much
So much more than your bombs and your rockets frighten us?
After all, you can crush us easily
So why are you so afraid?

Tell me
Who is the prisoner, who is the free
If you are so chained by your fear
That you must wall us and oppress us
Steal everything from us
And you are still not satisfied?

You who have everything, 
Tell us, who have nothing
Because you have taken all from us -

Tell me why
I should not strike back
If I must crawl on my belly
And my children bleed and cry.

Copyright B Purkayastha 2012

Yes - with this, I have officially begun writing again. It's more than time I did, anyway, though I will have to take it slow to start with. I don't know if I have any readers left. I suppose the response, if any, will let me know.


  1. You will always have readers Bill.

  2. Israel will not stop until the world rises up and tells them to. Actually this poem made me sick at heart although I have known, of course, for days that this is happening. For years. That my dollars are supporting it nauseates me.

    My understanding is that the relatively few Holocaust survivors in Israel are not the right-wing hawks - it is Americans who came to Israel fairly recently, who came from wealth and privilege, recruited to pump up the Jewish population. This is an obscenity.

  3. always the children
    good to have you back

  4. Back in the Eighties, the "world community" at least put on a show of outrage when Israel did its thing.

    Sure, the US or England or France would veto the condemnations at the UN, but somebody seemed to pay a little attention.

    Where are the voices speaking out against this now? What motivation does Israel have to change its behavior?

  5. This rather irregular reader is still around and about. This poem screams, the world needs more of this kind of comment.

  6. Bill,
    You came back with a superb poem/article.
    What "bravery" the zionist entity shows the world, attack children.
    I wish I would live to see the day when the US stops all support for that
    vile country.


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