no one leaves home unless home chases you
fire under feet
hot blood in your belly
it’s not something you ever thought of doing
until the blade burnt threats into
and even then you carried the anthem under
only tearing up your passport in an airport toilets
sobbing as each mouthful of paper
made it clear that you wouldn’t be going back.
you have to understand,
that no one puts their children in a boat
unless the water is safer than the land
no one burns their palms
no one spends days and nights in the stomach of a truck
feeding on newspaper unless the miles travelled
means something more than journey.
no one crawls under fences
no one wants to be beaten
Went to Azraq Refugee Camp in Jordan today. Official population at 53,967, according to @UNHCR as of February 2018. All Syrian #refugees.
In many ways it was not what I expected.
First thing you notice is how remote the location is — some 100 kms east of Amman; 20 kms from Azraq town; 75 kms to Saudi Arabia; 255 kms to Iraq; and 90 kms to the Syrian border — from which its inhabitants fled.
At the same time, the harshness of the setting — a hardscrabble, sprawling 15 square km patch, scratched, etched and stretched out of endless rolling desert.
The perimeter was equally formidable, with security fencing, official patrols, check points and razor wire.