The Pine Trees
This poem was written by Gabrielle Spear in a 12-Month Poetry Collection Generator taught by Angel Nafis
The Jewish National Fund planted pine trees to cover up over 530 Palestinian villages demolished by Zionist forces in 1947-1948. The pine trees were intended to make the new Ashkenazi immigrants feel at home.
with every crevice desecrated
in your ruins
with our breath
foliage paid in blood
but do not deny
to their knees
then yank an eden
from the rubble
then grow a welcome
making a hearth of this arid landscape
our invasive ancestry
our diseased chests
for even as we disguise
won’t be contained
Gabrielle Spear’s collection Doorways Doorways“imiryango” means doors, gates, and lineages depending on the inflection and context. In this collection, nearly everyone is complicit and capable of transformative possibilities: lineage is both a site of nation building and a doorway towards solidarity, god is both the survivor of state violence and the mastermind behind it, witness is survival and surveillance at once.
Gabrielle Spear is a poet and educator raised in Northwest Arkansas and based in Baltimore. Her work has been published or is forthcoming in Protean Magazine, Hobart After Dark, Anomaly, The Hunger, Sonora Review, Glass: A Journal of Poetry, Borderlands: Texas Poetry Review, and elsewhere. You can find her on Twitter @gabsters93 and on Instagram @verycuteasparagus.
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