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Stanzas of Exile[1]

Memory has the Fragrance of a Weeping Night Flo-

Wer Arousing in the Exile’s Blood a need for Singing[2]

Old Enough to Guess Home’s Gone if you Went There[3]

What does an Immigrant call it when they have No Home to Go Back to?[4]

No one puts their Child in a Boat – unless the Water is Safer than the Land[5]

“What on God’s Earth possessed you to Leave the Homeland where you very obviously

Belong and travel Unspeakable Distances to become a Penniless Immigrant in a Refined,

Highly Cultivated Society that could have gotten along very well Without You?” “The War”[6]

Keep, Ancient Lands, your Storied Pomp – Give me your Tired Poor, your Huddled

Masses Yearning to Breath Free, the Wretched Refuse of your Teeming Shore[7]

Here is the Voyage: Conjured Homeland – to Conjured Homeland[8]

See in my Poems Immigrants Continually Coming and Landing[9]

These Strangers in a Foreign World, Protection Asked of me –

Befriend them, Lest yourself in Heaven be found a Refugee[10]

[1] Saint-John Perse tr. Denis Devlin, Exile

[2] Mahmoud Darwish tr. Munir Akash & Carolyn Forché, Mural

[3] Philip Whalen, Native Speech

[4] George Abraham, [counter-terrorism]

[5] Warsan Shire, Home

[6] Wes Anderson, The Grand Budapest Hotel

[7] Emma Lazarus, The New Colossus

[8] Laura Da’, American Towns

[9] Walt Whitman, Starting from Paumanok

[10] Emily Dickinson, No. 1096

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