Hatred

Isn’t born

in the flowers that grow

between rubble or

in the green, bitter

olives that dot

your landscape and ours

 

It grows in

classrooms, in

newspaper headlines

in words

injected intravenously

with milk and mother’s spittle

 

Here, where history is split

into chapters of blood and shrapnel

where birthrights are divided

into Ours and Theirs

 

In the way tongues

mouth words, and in the folds

of garments and head coverings

woven through hundreds of

God-given years

 

Hatred grows

in prayers and slogans

where love is synonymous

with patriotism and where

defiance can be squeezed

from the barrel of a gun

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© Johnmichael Simon

2015

.