More sense to the senses

More sense to the senses

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I am fascinated by my hands

With, I carry my lavender basket

Stitch French knots and knit tiny socks

Write my poems and paint lilac twilight

But more enchanting

Caressing with 

The face of my beloved

And holding on my babe’s hand


I am fascinated by my ears

With, I hear birds singing

Enjoy melodic tunes

Learn new facts

Listen to fairytale stories

But more captivating

I hear with

My baby calling “mama”

And the tender heartbeat

Of the one I love


I am fascinated by my nose

With, I smell my favourite foods

Pineapple cake and ginger biscuit

Coffee, jasmine and lemon zest

Ocean waves and waterfalls

But more intriguing

The sweet scent of my twin-half

And the delicate fragrance

Of my newborn infant



I am fascinated by my eyes

With, I perceive the world in full colour

Beautiful butterflies

Flowers… trees… sky and stars

But more mesmerizing

The tears running down

Yearning for my soul mate

and gazing at my child sleeping



I am fascinated by my mouth

With, I taste delicious flavours

Tangy oranges… juicy mangoes

Sweet strawberries

But more alluring

Kissing my baby’s feet

And whispering words like

“Sweetheart… I love you”


“Thank you God for all these things”



 © Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved

As a child


As a child 

Don’t ever lose your sense of wonder

Look as a child with eyes open wide

You will see


Marvel at every leaf you come by

As you hold between your fingers


Laugh with tantalizing raindrops

As they touch your beautiful face


Fill your soul with glee… delightful

As you run to meet the rainbow


Don’t ever lose your sense of wonder

Listen as child with attentive heart 

You will hear


Feel the awe as you’re filled with joy

While you sing your favourite tune


Swirl… twirls… jump… hop… and skip

As you chant with doves of love


Be amazed at the joyful breeze

Blowing through your dancing hair


Don’t ever lose your sense of wonder

Observe as child with a soul so tender

You will understand


Don’t ever lose your sense of wonder



© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved

Keep me afloat

Keep me afloat


When rivers of sorrow run underground

Drenched with gloom I weep… keep me afloat


When gales of pain throw me around

With a broken-heart I mumble… keep me afloat


When waves of danger shake my ground

Frail, clutching the rail I whisper… keep me afloat


When storms of fury rage in my mind

On the rim of lunacy I gasp for sanity… keep me afloat


When clouds of fear smother my life

Disperse them… embrace me… keep me afloat


When fumes of doubts choke my insight

Blow it all away… clear out my thoughts… keep me afloat


When jaws of despair are open wide

Grab hold of my hand… don’t let me slip… keep me afloat


When floods of injustice cause me to drown

Pull me out… give me the kiss of life… keep me a float


When stabs of humiliation cut deep into my heart

Wrap well my injury… ease my pain… keep me afloat


When claws of adversity scratch my humanity

Come to my rescue… caress my wounds … keep me afloat


When boats of hope leave me behind

Draw out my wings… give me a push… keep me afloat



© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved

Pure love


Pure love

Pure love is selfless

It demands nothing at all

Its greatest satisfaction

Is seeing the beloved

Full of joy and delight


Pure love speaks no language

But that of the soul… silence

It needs no words

For the beloved understands


Pure love does not require

Physical closeness

It transcends all barriers

Separation by time and space

Is merely an illusion

The beloved is always near by


Pure love is generous

It gives endlessly

Waiting for nothing in return

And the more it gives

The more it grows


Pure love is infinite

It has neither beginning nor end

Bigger than space, older than time


Pure love is eternal

Before its glory

Mighty death stands powerless, in awe

It’ can neither harm nor destroy

0000000 oldies 21

Pure love is beautiful

It shines through feelings

Like a diamond in a pile of coal


Pure love is precious

It’s makes life worth living

No fear in death nor sorrow
Attribute of the Most Loving Divine



And you know what

I can feel your astounding pure love

Engulfing me

Can you feel mine?



© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved

Snakes and ladders

Snakes and ladders 

All of a sudden

The game starts


With a peculiar 2D cube in your hand

You begin at a precise point

Of time and space


You toss your magical dice

That only has two sides

A “good” and a “bad”


What is more bizarre about this gamble

Is that you are in charge

You choose what side it lands on


You desire the “good”

An up the ladder you go

One step… two steps

Three or may be four


You prefer the “bad”

The snake appears

And down you slide

One step… two steps

Three or may be four


You are constantly playing

And time is running fast

If you want to finish the game

And reach your destination

You’ve got to play it right



Before you know it

Your time will be over

Without ever arriving

And that is sad



© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved


You can do it


You can do it

Light a candle

One little candle

Watch the darkness fade away


Just try it out


One ray of light

Wipes away the gloomiest

Jet-black nights

As the dawn breaks


Just observe


Can you see that

All the might of darkness

In the world

Cannot distinguish

The faintest flicker

Of a beam of light


Light a candle

One little candle

Watch the darkness fade away


You can do it



© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved 

Watching you is a prayer

Watching you is a prayer

This poem is dedicated to my beloved children


Your sweet smile

Tastes of paradise

So delightful


Fills my heart with joy

Lifts me…. Lifts me…. Lifts me

I can fly


Watching you is a prayer


Your laughter

Captures my soul

Takes me to fairy-land

Where dancing trees live

 In rainbow homes

I’m lost in wonder


Watching you is a prayer


The twinkle in your eyes

Pierces my being

Explodes into a thousand million stars

I am dazzled with fascination

Watching you is a prayer


To the One who fashioned you

I kneel down

And pray

For watching you is a prayer


And I want to pray

For ever


© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved

Touch of magic

Touch of magic 


Everything was black and white…

Void of all colours,

My world was grey


You walk in

All blushes with blossom

Vibrant… fantastic hues



My universe was 2D

I could only slide sideways

Just about left or right


You walk in

Up… I pop… I jump

In so many directions

My cosmos is of ten dimensions

Free… I fly



I was blue icy cold

My shattered frosty pieces

Rattled inside


You walk in

My spring blooms

Jasmine… lilies…

Tulips and azaleas



I was diminishing

Fraying… fading away


You walk in

My heart… consoled

My smile… radiant

My soul… whole



Today… all was dull

Shrouded with gloom

Clouded with despair


With a touch of magic

Of your being

Life is transformed






© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved




Hearts are not machines, you know

That we switch -on and off- as we please

Hearts don’t abide by rules of reason

To them, logic makes no sense at all


When they love they don’t ask why

Without resistance they surrender

Even if burning with hurt and sorrow

They carry on loving despite the pain


When your heart is telling you some thing

 Don’t suppress… just comply

 Hearts know best, there is no doubt

Their awareness is Divine

IMG_3496 copy 


© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat  -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved



Dialogue with my atheist friend

07. September

Dear Sam

I was uplifted with attending the meeting yesterday especially with seeing some new faces, but with all my respect to you as an activist and free thinker I am still perplexed at your stiff position that insists that the only solution to the Palestinian problem is “a one secular” state. My favoured vision also is to see the one state solution; however I can’t fathom the idea that any one of us can claim that he/ she knows what is best for that society! Or that we have the right to impose our ideas on others.

 They know their circumstances better than we do, they have brains to think for themselves, and they are capable of making their own decisions.

It saddens me to see that we as humans -time and time again- fail to have enough insight so we end up not being able to live up to our own principles by giving to others what we want for ourselves: the freedom to choose, the freedom to have their own views on the world, the freedom to create a society that reflects their beliefs, the freedom to live by their own principles.

We always unknowingly fall in the same hole, we think that our ideas are the best, our minds are the greatest, and our principles are the finest. And this is scary because it is “kind of” arrogant.

Why can’t we give people in the Middle East some credit and credibility? Why should we seek to impose our solutions? What different we become from the imperialists whose aim is to impose their vision and control others?

I am perplexed and mystified!!





07- September

Hi Nahida,

A number of points immediately come to mind.  Perhaps most important is Article 16 of the Palestine National Charter adopted by the Palestinian National Council in July 1968 which reads”
The liberation of Palestine, from a spiritual point of view, will provide the Holy Land with an atmosphere of safety and tranquillity, which in turn will safeguard the country’s religious sanctuaries and guarantee freedom of worship and of visit to all, without discrimination of race, colour, language, or religion. Accordingly, the people of Palestine
look to all spiritual forces in the world for support.

This was one of the first things that drew me to the Palestinian cause and over the years I have heard many Palestinian leaders call for a democratic, secular, unitary state based on the above article. Actually the full charter is an amazing document and for me it
demonstrates the intellectual maturity of the Palestinian people.

We have had many discussions on secularity but most important for me is the belief that the Government of a country should be separate from the religious beliefs of its citizens.   I will never accept the imposition of a religion by legislation or any other means for that matter.

I argue with all my heart against a Jewish state not because it is Jewish but because I do not believe it is the role to the state to impose a religion on its people.

The Israeli Government could remove all laws that discriminate against non-Jewish people.  They could even enact laws protecting the rights of non-Jewish people.  But as long as it is a “Jewish State” then by definition anyone who is non-Jewish has secondary status.  Otherwise
why bother having a “Jewish State”.

More importantly I will make the same arguments against any religion.

Perhaps we should be arguing for a three-state solution – an Islamic state, a Jewish state and secular state.

I am afraid this is one where we will have to agree to disagree.





07- September

Dear Sam


But –dear Sam- what kind of secular state do you want?

 A state that will ban the hijab and prevent me from wearing what I want -like secular France, Germany, Turkey, Tunisia, Belgium, and now even Bulgaria?

 A state that will not allow its children to learn about any faith or religion before they’re 18?

 A state that will impose the teaching of evolution -as viewed by Darwin– as the only scientific truth?

 A state that will consider the teaching of the theory of intelligent design an illegal unlawful practice?

 Can you -dear Sam- give me the guarantee that this secular state unlike many others will allow me the freedom to practice my religion without being persecuted for my beliefs like what happened to people of faith in many communist countries?

Will my right to have faith be protected without having to face the accusation of being backwards, superstitious?

Can you give the guarantee that I will be allowed to believe in a Creator the same way it allows others to believe in blind chance as the cause of our existence -by giving us equal rights and similar platforms to teach our views?

Will people of faith be allowed to teach their views to children?


Dear Sam

Consider this scenario: few years from now and miraculously the Zionists agreed to a one state for all, also miraculously they acknowledged their wrong doings and allowed exiled Palestinians to return. Then the nature and the constitution of the new born state were put to the vote.

 Isn’t it the right of the citizens then to decide the nature of their new state? How to introduce laws that will cater for all? As it will be a multi-religious multi-ethnic too.



07- September

Hi Nahida,

I meant to say you looked really well on Tuesday night. I do hope it is an indication that things are getting a bit better for you.

Now for your last letter, It seems that once again we may be down to semantics.

You appear to be working from the premise that taking a particular belief and defining it as a “religious belief” gives it special status, and that it should not be subject to any criticism or restrictions.

Your request for the right to have your faith protected without having to face the accusation of being backwards or superstitious is a perfect example of this, for in every other context this would be considered a restriction on freedom of speech.  The people who believed the earth
was flat, that slavery was morally just, that women who were designated as witches should be burned at the state, that people who were mentally ill should be kept in chains or that women should not be allowed to vote, would have loved to have their rights protected in this way.

History is loaded with “religious beliefs” and as a secularist I apply the same criteria to all. Childhood sacrifice has been an essential part of many religions throughout history, but it is one belief, which we can all agree, should not have its rights protected.  Turning to the
other end of the spectrum, prayer the privacy one’s own home is also an essential part of many religions, but I do not think there are many secularists who would deny people this right.  I certainly would not.

So all other “religious beliefs” fall in between and the issue becomes drawing the line.  If I guarantee you the right to wear a headscarf in public, do I not have to give the same guarantee to anyone who claims their headdress is part of their religious belief, no matter how
offensive some may find it?

Moving beyond headdress, the list of possible conflicts becomes endless and always the same question: where do you draw the line?

Two religious beliefs come to mind on which I would like to know your views.  Jehovah Witness do not believe in blood transfusions and there have been numerous cases where they have been prepared to let their children die, rather than allow them to have a blood transfusion when
it was needed to save the child’s life. Usually the doctors go to court and get a court order allowing them to save the child’s life.  Also some naturists consider nudism to be part of their religious beliefs.
Indeed they argue we are born without clothes and there is no practical need for people relaxing in a warm climate to be forced into wearing clothes.  Thus the question becomes as long as I am guaranteeing religious rights, should I guarantee Jehovah Witness the right to deny their children blood transfusions and naturists the right to go without clothes.  Incidentally can I guarantee the right of two people of same sex to love each other, to share their lives and be free of being considered deviant?


© Copyright 2006 Nahida Izzat & Sam Semoff -PoetryforPalestine – All Rights Reserved

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