Who? by Ingrid Andrew

Who threw them on the floor?
Who slammed the prison door?
Who binded them up in twine?
Who denied it was a crime?

Was it you or was it me?
Who turn away from what we see?
Who turn away from what we hear.
In dread ; and fear.

Who punched this son’s father?
Who abused this daughter’s mother?
Who blindfolded this sisters’ brother?
Who tore apart these lovers?
Who tore apart these lovers?

Was it you or was it me?
Who turn away from what we see,
Who turn away from what we hear,
in dread  and fear?

We’re all a part of this distress;
The human spirit is homeless.
Who slammed the prison door?
And who
and who still believes in

Ingrid Andrew is a poet, artist and singer songwriter who lives in South East London, with her husband, daughter and cat.
There are 2 songs on you tube: 

‘The Charcoal Woman’
And some of Ingrid’s art work and poetry at:  ingridandrew.wordpress.com

For Gaza and Jewish Voice for Peace by Ingrid Andrew

Check points
like the iron fences
that cattle are forced along
Journeys continuously
sweet journeys
no longer sweet
that proceeded naturally
broken down
by check point after check point
by soldiers
who’ve lost the meaning
of what they do
what are they checking for
(that we are human too?)
The soldiers are frightened of us
padded out in their flak jackets
binoculars and weapons
The soldiers are children
nineteen year olds with guns
who are frightened of shadows
even the sheep and goats
are terrorists in disguise.
And they are even capable of this
they will infiltrate demonstrations
become stone throwers themselves
~ retaliation guaranteed.
The soldiers are unseen
they’re watching but we can’t see them
they call out your name in Hebrew,
though you’re Arabic
(Sometimes your finger prints don’t fit
your hands are too hot
you’ve cut a finger
you’re turned away
a days’ work lost, you’ve lost the day)
The days are made of small humiliations
you’re never allowed to forget that you’re not wanted
that even the last remaining pieces of land
no longer belong to you or your families
these slivers of land
where olive trees once grew
now there are iron fences
and gravelled sand
an ugliness
that eats into your eyes
here is a little farm
small family owned
just about makes a living
but the easy trading path
has been blocked by huge, unmovable stones
oppression occupation
makes all lifes little tasks
more difficult
This is a field of stumps
this is where a cold and dust filled wind
roars over a field
of crosses,
looks like a cemetary
these are the graveyards
of our olive groves
Here is a little pile of shoes
needed, still useful , well worn
do theses shoes remind you of something?
Here are some bright eyed children
returning from school
to a pile of rubble
This is what we have now
some corrugated iron sheds
that provide a minimum of shade
behind us these artificial hills
are the rubble of what once were homes
behind those hills
is a shining sea
we cannot reach
This rubble
collapsing in the harsh sun
is all that remains of a Bedouin home
This is our library
this perfect large round hole
created by
target practise.
No fuel, no apparatus,
the sewage plant fails,
here the air is full of the smell
of shit
the fish are poisoned
our fishermen venture further out to seas
more target practise
they’re seen as a security risk
often shot summarily
the sewage is moving out
slowly the pristine blue and green
is muddied
soon the smell will defile the occupiers nostrils
it can’t be stopped by a wall
soon it will wake you up as well
your daughter’s ill
your mother needs hospital treatment
no problem
just tell us what’s going on
in your town,
who the young men are
who we might call subversive
anyone who’s not resigned to dumb suffering
we are besieged
Bethlehem marooned,
the mosques cut off; young
men apprehended for days,
for months; never charged.
(Our cities, our towns were once so beautiful)
Children are scared
old people humiliated
some people retreat into their minds
the constant harrassment drives them there
visitors are told they shouldn’t be here
(we are suffocating)
A wall has been built over and around our land
(What is it you don’t want to see?)
a wall has been built upon our dreams
(so they don’t have to see us, being driven into the sea)
This is the wall of divisiveness
the wall that seeks to make us less than human
that squats upon our souls
that hides us from you
Our children
draw weapons, tanks and refugees,
(our children are barely allowed to breathe)
Our nights are infested with nightmares,
the constant drumming,
the helicopters ~ dread machines.
(Our dreams have been invaded)
Careless snipers
hidden in the high towers
despise our vulnerability.
(Where is our dignity?)
our futures are pressed upon
Suffering sewn into every moment
and yet our bruised hearts
can still sing, can still laugh,
can hold our children to us.
(How can we find a way to your hearts
when will you take down the wall in your eyes?)
(the wall is 12 metres high
it runs through the middle of towns
checkpoint towers are armed with binocolours and guns
during the recent assault
the agricultural college was bombed
the port was bombed
the university was bombed
Hq of the Palestinian teachers association bombed
Media centre bombed
here are the buildings the Europeans
and Saudies built
no tin, no bricks,
no wood in Gaza,
nothing to protect us against the dust and sun
nothing to build with
electricity falters
On a school blackboard
‘I will visit my brother tomorrow
One day I will go to Jerusalem
one day the walls will fall’
and you will see our suffering humanity
and in doing so,
reclaim your own.