Fady Joudah is a Palestinian-American poet, translator, and physician. The poems in Alight alternate between the estranging familial and strangely familiar, between burning and illumination. As father, husband, and physician, he gives children and vulnerable others voice in this hauntingly lyrical collection.

The Palestinian poet Fady Joudah ‘sa poem called ‘Mimesis’

My daughter
Wouldn’t hurt a spider
That had nested
Between her bicycle handles
For two weeks
She waited
Until it left of its own accord

If you tear down the web I said
It will simply know
This isn’t a place to call home
And you’d get to go biking

She said that’s how others
Become refugees, isn’t it?


There is no refugee crisis. There is only the crisis of humanity, a crisis of war and hunger that drives refugees. There is a crisis of humanity in the way people are forced to starve  . There is a crisis of humanity in the way merchants of death sell weapons (as shown by this latest CodePink report) and by the way soldiers and the police train other soldiers and the police to treat other humans with harshness (as shown by this latest Jewish Voice for Peace report about Israeli training of the US police). There are no refugees. There are only people who have been forced from their homes.