Water & Salt
76 pages
English

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76 pages
English

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Description

Lena Khalaf Tuffaha's debut, Water & Salt, sings in the voices of people ravaged by cycles of war and news coverage. These poems alternately rage, laugh, celebrate and grieve, singing in the voices of people ravaged by cycles of war and news coverage and inviting the reader to see the human lives lived beyond the headlines.

Sujets

Informations

Publié par
Date de parution 27 avril 2017
Nombre de lectures 2
EAN13 9781597095945
Langue English
Poids de l'ouvrage 1 Mo

Informations légales : prix de location à la page 0,0500€. Cette information est donnée uniquement à titre indicatif conformément à la législation en vigueur.

Exrait

Water Salt
Copyright 2017 by Lena Khalaf Tuffaha
All Rights Reserved
No part of this book may be used or reproduced in any manner whatsoever without the prior written permission of both the publisher and the copyright owner.
Book layout by Stephanie Lopez
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
Names: Tuffaha, Lena Khalaf, author.
Title: Water salt : poems / by Lena Khalaf Tuffaha.
Other titles: Water and salt : poems
Description: First edition. | Pasadena, CA : Red Hen Press, 2017.
Identifiers: LCCN 2016048416 | ISBN 9781597090292 (pbk. : alk. paper) | eISBN 9781597095945
Subjects: LCSH: War poetry. | War victims-Poetry.
Classification: LCC PS3620.U363 A6 2017 | DDC 811/.6-dc23
LC record available at https://lccn.loc.gov/2016048416
The National Endowment for the Arts, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission, the Dwight Stuart Youth Fund, the Max Factor Family Foundation, the Pasadena Tournament of Roses Foundation, the Pasadena Arts Culture Commission and the City of Pasadena Cultural Affairs Division, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, the Audrey Sydney Irmas Charitable Foundation, Sony Pictures Entertainment, Amazon Literary Partnership, and the Sherwood Foundation partially support Red Hen Press.

First Edition
Published by Red Hen Press
www.redhen.org
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS
Grateful acknowledgment is due to the editors and staff of the following journals who first published some of the poems in this collection, not always with identical titles or texts: Blackbird : Cruising Altitude and My English Teacher Tells Me ; Borderlands Texas Review : Mountain, Stone ; Compose : Exceptional ; Exit 13 : Almond Trilogy ; Human : My Mother Returns to Her Childhood Home and Naming It ; The James Franco Review : Linger ; The Lake for Poetry : Again and Again, Copybooks, Immigrant, and Time Management ; Magnolia : Superpowers ; Mizna : Translation and Wasta ; Monarch Review : Drowning ; The Ofi Press : Middle Village and Tu burni ; Pontoon : National Security Advisory ; Postcards and Poems : Amman Coiffure ; Sukoon : Blue Morning Music, Dhayaa , Eating the Earth, Intifada Portrait, and Newsworthy ; The Taos Journal of International Poetry Art : Damascus Dowry Chest, Instructions for Making Arabic Coffee, It s Beirut out Here , Rules for Recitation, and Upon Arrival ; Vox Populisphere : Running Orders.
I am forever grateful to the teachers and poets and loved ones who have nurtured these poems with their constant encouragement, careful reading, and countless kindnesses. Special thanks to Naomi Shihab Nye, Annemarie Jacir, Susan Rich, Rick Barot, and Peggy Shumaker. Thank you to Hedgebrook for creating a community of women writers unlike any other. Thank you Poets on the Coast 2012. Thank you to my Rainier Writing Workshop family. Thank you to Kate Gale and the wonderful team at Red Hen Press. Many of these poems honor the memory of my grandparents, Husni Fareez and Fareeha Kahhaleh, whose home and garden and endless love were my first homeland. Eternal gratitude to my parents, all of my family, and especially to Raya, Reema, and Renda for your love and inspiration. Naseem: suffice it to say, thank you for that very first email, for finding me, for always believing.
For Nu om Husni Fariz
CONTENTS
I. YOU WILL NEED TO STATE THE REASON FOR YOUR VISIT
Upon Arrival
Grandmothering
Time Travel
Rules for Recitation
Immigrant
My English Teacher Tells Me
Damascus Dowry Chest
Dhayaa
Circling the Dome of the Sky
Eating the Earth
Tu burni
II. EMERGING FROM THE ANCIENT WOUND
Drowning
Mountain, Stone
Water Salt
Running Orders
Abu Nasser
Intifada Portrait
Again and Again
Ruin
Blue Morning Music
Mount Sinjar
Newsworthy
Superpowers
Exceptional
It s Beirut out Here
III. AMULETS FOR THE JOURNEY
Almond Trilogy
National Security Advisory
Wasta
Instructions for Making Arabic Coffee
Amman Coiffure
My Mother Returns to Her Childhood Home
The Whole Point
Translation
Lighthouse
Relocation
Many Hats
Middle Village
Time Management
Copybooks
Linger
Cruising Altitude
Naming It
Subterranean
Notes
Maybe tonight when we sleep
all we have seen will arrange itself
inside us, quick trails of stars,
and we will wake glowing,
the world in our eyes.
-Naomi Shihab Nye
I
YOU WILL NEED TO STATE THE REASON FOR YOUR VISIT
UPON ARRIVAL
You will need to state the reason for your visit.
Don t say because I want to walk down old roads
and caress stone walls the color of my skin.
You will need to state the reason for your visit.
Don t say because the olives are ready for harvest
and I will coax the fruit from the trees,
press it into liquid gold.
You will need to state the reason for your visit.
Don t say because my parents house
still sits empty on a bluff overlooking the sea,
the green shutters my grandfather had just painted
remain sealed shut
and the army listed the property s owners
as absentees.
You will need to state the reason for your visit.
Don t say because I am carrying prayers in my suitcase
for a people who wait,
and I ll unfold them
embroidered linens of verse
and spread them out across the land.
GRANDMOTHERING
In memory of SFK
Tin bowl
warm water
wide-tooth comb
red ribbons
Your hands
weave moisture
into stubborn, parched curls
again and
again
tucking prayers
in whispers near my ears
humming love
patiently
Strumming
like oud strings
familiar song
into thick, brown strands
ya teyteh ya habibti
Tying each braid
with a delicate bow
holding my chin up with your
warm hands
smiling again
at a young girl
in red ribbons
TIME TRAVEL
We travel back so that you
will know who we were and who
you might have been if you
had lived here too.
We travel back so that you
can become who you are.
We travel back not to
because even now
after we ve lived longer
here than anywhere else
we still think of this place
as new, as a destination,
a motion forward
out of the womb
or darkness or the arms of
love. We travel because
motion is more comfort
than settling, calcifying.
We travel because it means
we haven t gotten to where
we re going yet, the story
is still being written and
our fractures aren t done setting.
There is still a chance
we ll turn out different
or better or-best of all-
like our parents without
knowing we ve become
who they were. We travel
because we knew
where we were going when
we left, and leaving again
we are born-again immigrants
who have already studied the map,
learned the language,
can decipher the street signs and
the weather patterns. We travel
to trace the bark of old trees
and lean against walls
the color of our skin, we travel
back to where the bird
that flies out of your throat
when you sing nests
in the cypress branches,
and the sage that soothes your
trembling grows in the shade
of our memories. We travel
back and forward in this
revolution, a story spun
in strands of sunlight and
dust, pages and pages of translation.

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