POETRY: Sara Salavati – “They came for Baghdad”
No more meeting up with old friends in front of the Al-Mutanabbi
No more spontaneous strolls down to your buddy’s café
No more late nights around the Zawraa Park and watching the boys smoking shisha
So, tell me now
How did they make you leave?
Where did you go?
What do think of when you hear the word ‘home’?
You never talk about it
But I know you do think about it
Whenever you miss it you put on our satellite to watch it all over again
You hear someone from the back of the restaurants you used to go to
You see someone playing the same games as you did
You see someone in the house that you grew up in
And now you see someone driving down
Down the same streets as you did
Whenever you miss it you put our western news on to watch it all over again
This time being greeted with a different kind of piercing torture:
“Millions of Iraqi children abandoned or orphaned”
“Over 200 families evacuated after rising river level in eastern Iraq”
“A quest to bring peace to Iraq”
So which channel do you leave on?
The nostalgic yet twisted harmonic one which confirms what you already must have been expecting after so many years
Or the western reality of how your streets need to be bombed down in order to create peace?
So, tell me now
Why did they come for Baghdad?
Photographer: Gert Holmertz
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