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Thursday, March 12, 2009

 

Mahmoud Darwish:'It is the goal of my life to write poems that are claimed by children'


A beautiful story, "Remembering Mahmoud Darwish," by Naomi Shihab Nye in Rethinking Schools. And a wonderful "Teaching Idea" from Linda Christensen for Darwish's "The Prison Cell."
Photo: Michael Nye
A Palestinian refugee and her poem

Naomi Shihab Nye put this picture on the cover of her collection of poetry, 19 Varieties of Gazelle — Poems of the Middle East. She was called by angry "scholars" who informed her that the poem was by Mahmud Darwish. When Nye met Darwish a week later she said to him: "'Please forgive our mistake. If this book ever gets reprinted, I promise we will give the proper credit for the verse. ' He stared closely at the picture. Tears ran down his cheeks. 'Don't correct it,' he said. 'It is the goal of my life to write poems that are claimed by children.'"

I think that it is important to thank publications that recognize Palestinians in such a positive way. My letter to the editor:

Dear Editor,

It is with profound gratitude that I thank you for publishing Naomi Shihab Nye's "Remembering Mahmoud Darwish" and Linda Christensen's "Teaching Ideas: The Prison Cell." How beautiful for Nye to document Darwish's words upon learning that the refugee child had claimed his poem as her own: "'Don't correct it,' he said. 'It is the goal of my life to write poems that are claimed by children.'" I intend to incorporate Christensen's ideas for teaching "The Prison Cell" in my AP Literature classroom.

Sincerely,

Nancy Harb Almendras


Comments:
I guess the poetry that claimed by Naomi Shihab Ny is really great. One that is worth to collect and Mahmoud Darwish made a great one. :D
 
Nice post which It is promise we will give the proper credit for the verse. ' He stared closely at the picture. Tears ran down his cheeks. Don't correct it,' he said. Thanks a lot.
 
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