Nye for Love


Children of the World,
who breathe perfumed air in
rose gardens, spice-filled kitchens,
orange groves and city streets…

Children of the World,
who hear bells toll, sirens wail,
fairies laugh, leaves whisper secrets
to the wind and bombs fall…

Children of the World,
who see dogs chasing squirrels,
paintbox sunsets and
who see their mother’s love shine…

Children of the World,
who touch the silk of lilies,
take peas from the pod,
who cry the salt that fills oceans…

Children of the World,
who taste pomegranate from the tree,
savor Chilaquiles and cabbage rolls,
who know the bitter-sweet delight of chocolate…

I dedicate my years to you.
For you, I write my poems.

Copyright 2017 Brenda Davis Harsham

Girl reading A Book With No Pictures

Notes: This week I was inspired by Naomi Shihab Nye‘s book of poems and art from Middle Eastern creators. In particular this poem:

All the children of the world,
in all my abodes
you are the roses in my courtyard,
the green and the fresh,
the sun and the stars,
you are the beautiful hands,
the ones who raise the flag of childhood high.

I give my life to you.
To you I write my poems.

— by Mohammed Shehadeh, Translated by Aziz Shihab, from Letters to Childhood and found within The Space Between Our Footsteps: Poems and Paintings from the Middle East, selected by Naomi Shihab Nye, and introduced the poem with these words: “In the spirit of the children at the Cairo library who said, during the worst sandstorm of the twentieth century, ‘just keep reading!'”


Happy Poetry Friday and thanks to Penny Parker Klostermann for hosting! Also, thanks for the poetry postcards. I posted my thanks here.

69 thoughts on “Nye for Love

  1. I really believe that this would be a beautiful picture book, Brenda. Each part is a treasured detail of our world, like “savor Chilaquiles and cabbage rolls,”. And I love “just keep reading”.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. “you are the beautiful hands” — yes, I picture our world in the hands of these children and it gives me hope.

    Your poem is a portrait of children across the world — wonderful details.

    Liked by 1 person

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