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Like Lebanon

Loving you is like Lebanon—

December 12, 2023

Loving you is like Lebanon—
The sea the mountains the cedars
Religions sects West East Beirut
Syrians Palestinians Haifa-born
Lebanese claimed “Phoenicians”
Lebanese-speaking Egyptians
Happy new-age hippies in Chouwen
Uptight shoppers in Solidere
Balconies overlooking Hamra
Old houses made into tobacco stores
Garbage forgotten in streets
Rain attempting to cleanse the city
The view from Beit Meri
The manakeesh from Um Jean’s
tiny kiosk

I love you; four million in me
and fourteen more outside.

This poem appeared in We Call to the Eye & the Night: Love Poems by Writers of Arab Heritage, edited by Hala Alyan and Zeina Hashem Beck and published by Persea Books.