If Only You Could See the Bright Flower
-for Huda, Ein el Hilweh
If you could see, Mariam, I would ask you why
you face only northward? Bright Huda sees you.
She lives just south of you, low in the valley.
Why do you stand so still, silent, serene
on your tower, there on the hill top?
Is Ein el Hilweh no city? Is it no country?
You are comforting the infant in your arms.
It seems you are too busy. How is that, Mariam,
you who understand better than anyone
that your child’s light is your light? And so?
Hold my sister Huda, Mariam. She is your child.
The child in your arms, cradled there,
safe against your breast, is every child.
If only you could take her in your arms.
“The sun is too hot against my roof,
but I stand here in the valley, looking
To the sea, then up to a statue of Mariam
Holding her child, but where is my comfort?”
Mariam, I would take her in my arms myself,
but I, a stranger, cannot. And who am I?
Mariam, you cannot see your bright daughter.
For all the sunlight there, will you not see her?
I hear that she lives in a dark place, even at noon.
I hear that darkness there blots out the sun.
Mariam, if only you could turn, look southward,
look deep into Ein el Hilweh, into the heart of her
and see the bright lights, the magnificent flowers
of Allah blooming and shining there. See Bright Huda.