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By Nathalie Handal
I’d like to be a shrine, so I can learn from peoples’ prayers the story of hearts. I’d like to be a scarf so I can place it over my hair and understand other worlds. I’d like to be the voice of a soprano singer so I can move through all borders and see them vanish with every spell-­binding note. I’d like to be light so I illuminate the dark. I’d like to be water to fill bodies so we can gently float together indefinitely. I’d like to be a lemon, to be zest all the time, or an olive tree to shimmer silver on the earth. Most of all, I’d like to be a poem, to reach your heart and stay.

Source: Poetry (March 2021)

  • Living
  • Love

Poet Bio

Nathalie Handal
French-American poet, playwright, translator, and editor Nathalie Handal is originally of a Palestinian family from Bethlehem. She has lived in Europe, Latin America, the Arab world, and the United States. She has taught at New York University, Columbia University, and at the Low-Residency MFA program at Sierra Nevada College. She writes the literary travel column "The City and the Writer" for Words without Borders. Handal’s poetry draws on her experiences of dislocation, home, travel, and exile. See More By This Poet

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