Poetry: Say, Gaza

Linda Backiel

He is turned, slightly,
just a boy, in his own home.
Say, Gaza.

Someone took a photograph
in the ruin of what was
his life. Black and white. Sharp

shadows. Light falls on what is not
exercising its own right of return;
picture a bad dream. His city. A fringe

clinging to the sea. A window open. No,
broken. At first, you don’t see it. You
don’t want to. You say “rubble.” But

there is a bomb in the bed.
The bed is broken by the bomb,
much bigger than the bed.

Don’t worry, no blood. But
there is a boy in the room
with the bomb in the bed.

The bed, a broken V, sunk
across the middle. Sheets rumpled,
not from sleeping.

The boy wonders where
will he sleep? When
will it explode?

His home, a fringe
clinging to the sea.

Say, Gaza.

Linda Backiel is a criminal defense attorney living in San Juan, Puerto Rico.

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Feature image: Blockade of Gaza

Published on Monthly Review February 1,m 2022

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