The late Emirati activist Alaa Al-Siddiq's poem "The Homeland's God" stirred the minds of participants at the literary and artistic virtual event organized by the Alternative Human Rights Expo through the ZOOM platform and live-streamed on other social media platforms.
It was clear that activist Iyad al-Baghdadi, one of the event's moderators, was moved by the poem performed in Alaa's voice and recorded it before her death.
After the poem ended, al-Baghdadi offered his condolences to the Emirati activist and wished her to rest in peace before continuing with the program of the event.
Notable was the interaction with Alaa's poem on social media, where most comments praised her poetic talent and expressed the poem's touching words describing feelings of diaspora and exile.
It is noteworthy that the poem was published two weeks ago on the AJ+ platform in a video clip titled "The Homeland's God by the late Emirati poet Alaa Al-Siddiq: Politics Exiled Her and Words Liberated Her".
The virtual event, which took place on Thursday evening, was part of a joint social media campaign launched by 24 human rights organizations under the title "Alternative Human Rights Expo" to highlight the repression and violation of human rights in the UAE and expose the falsity of the narrative of "tolerance and openness" that the UAE authorities are trying to promote through Expo 2020 in Dubai.
The Homeland’s God
A poem by Alaa Al-Siddiq
Oh God of questions, before you we stood
And when we felt a shiver of doubt
Seduction froze us
Such a long season of cold
Wasting my lifetime and that of my friend's
And that of my path
And I never asked the heavy question again
Isn’t there an end
Oh, God of time, before you we stood
My imprisoned father was frozen in time
I've grown so much
And I've feared so much
That the rose of my lifetime
And the plant of my heart
Will never be seen by him
And broke their promises at the season of harvest
Their yield was dead
Oh, god of the homeland,
An ugly word disguised as a euphemism
Words have learned how to adorn themselves
Exile.. diaspora.. voyage
Can a poet remedy what oppression ruined?
A homeland on a plane
How could such homeland be?
Inside a hotel box
Devoid of memories
Oh God of religion before you we stood
We hold onto burning embers
Given out by an heir without ancestry
Who made us to dance over a bed of embers as we burn
Then he moves around us.. claps in amusement
As he sees us longing to our mecca
Unable to circulate around it