Saturday, July 2, 2011

To Alice Walker: You're on a Ship of Fools

Poem by Award winning writer Nanette Rayman-Rivera:

Come! Sail away, come sail away, on your Audacity

of Hope: your version of Gaza is not the real world. How can I leave

you ignorant, sailing the ocean with a lack of clean clothes

dreaming this wrong sort of thing, holding

your letters, smugly

preparing to announce your discovery!

as the blaze of the Middle East sun

truly does burn

being wholly restrained by

the spanking new mall dotted

with wild orchids and aster

by the rows upon rows of oranges and sweets.

It makes no sense

to come a’ courting Hamas, to resist

the eternal fig of truth. It is not déclassé enough, the ruffle those letters make

beating up the buntline: the soul

wants to shimmer, but I doubt that you own one, in our comprehension of

that idea. O Alice, feed your head,

O Alice,

Nazi-headed old nymph from Eatonton Georgia.

Letter-carrier. Racketeer. Perjury Pimp.

You will abandon your slander soon enough.

Your liver-bellied letters and anti-Semitic lies,

your shot-out eye and catawampus fervor,

your love of Dylan and Martin Luther King, Jr.

dissolves in your 100-proof blood.

Do you think I’ll leave you in peace, bald as a cue

ball and nude in the church pew, oblivious

to the charter of Hamas, who would look under stones

to find a Jew to stone. You must not know

how many Qassam rockets we bear, the little suicide

boys & the mortar attacks on Ashkelon falling

down laughing even in August, in the middle of erev’s darkness. You become

also responsible for these deaths.

I am your huckleberry, your psychosis, your greasy stove, Israel’s pure heart,

your Malcom X-ed out, I am the Euphorbia microsphaera growing

from your mad-dog vessel by being poisonous: I am the pain

warning the world: you must need love real bad

to have abandoned the Jews

in favor of Hamas, those heroic Jewish lambs turning

tumbles in their graves, turning ashen in twilight, waves of wild echoes

of Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman not permitted the use

of earth , not anticipating the truncheons & bullets. I must remind you

of those good ole’ boys of Neshoba County beating & shooting those Jews,

the ones who saved you.

So, you can withhold the lies heavy as rain and I’ll be happy

with the hot nights that come so often here, while your flotilla soaks

awkwardly into evil’s crescent moon. Israel’s sun rests in my

eyes, I can always smell you.

I can carry the words of Rav Kahane to foil you—

Above all, it is not decency or goodness of gentleness that impresses

the Middle East, but strength.

You’re the river too lazy to spit out the sewerage, an annual midwife refusing

to cut your fascist umbilical cord. You are the reaper, the cult-whore, dirty sock drawer,

a cavern to fill with sterile manure. In the end, a hole to fill with fertile truth.

I can’t carry Kahane’s words long enough to dissuade you,

although you once married a Jew. Can you picture him

as a boy, hovering in the doorway right by the Mezuzah, a picture

postcard made ugly by you for your cargo. You spread your alfresco on ash,

you say: What is to be done if the Israeli military murders you, where

Code Pink will light every Muslim-sympathizing wretch at the wick

of your self-righteous grody hokum.

Look at me, a Jew, touching my eyes

to make my soul calm, my fingers dry from Southern sun;

in flat land, bursts of pink flowers, nameless—

even here, even at the furthest point from Israel,

even at my never-ending love for Yerushalaim,

my hand wiping my face makes

a figure, not of surrender,

but one of Am Y’Israel Chai!

and I know

I am free to fly past

your audacity.

Nanette Rayman-Rivera is an award winning author, order her book from this link:


More on Author Nanette Rayman-Rivera in this link:

Sigrid Daughter


  1. I think it's becoming extremely obvious this flotilla never had "peaceful" intentions, and Israel has every right to defend themselves. I would like to invite you to check out my page, Prevent the IHH Flotilla Towards Gaza

    I appreciate your support.


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