Khader Adnan poem

Palestinian prisoner Khader Adnan, held for over 2 months by Israel without being accused of any crime, entered his 65th day of hunger strike Monday. 

Khader Adnan poem
Cy Twombly: "Min-Oe", 1951


O to go with a bang,

And not be made to stab you to death with toothpicks,

Year after year, a 168 hour work week.


In our minds the television sets are always on

In our skulls, always our childhood kitchens, parents conversing

About grownup stuff (do grownups exist?)

And in the paper: the cross-section of a rubber bullet, not made entirely of rubber.

So yes,

The radio in his town played different tunes,

Allah is merciful, we are not, and august is not. The gravel, he knows the gravel.

I know the gravel.

Allah is merciful. Is Khader Adnan?

February isn’t, February is a ribcage.


When I betray by caring, I betray,

And he, the suicide, betrays well.

To make them murder is to make the murder seen.

Here is what they never told:



Then, the gravel was outside, but the kitchen was clean, now the enemy plate

Is full of the most fluid mud,

And in the paper: the picture of the burning tire, made entirely of rubber,

And of the explosive belt, made of murder,

And of the gun, made of murder

And of Syria and Itamar and every wall and the gravel and mud and the blur, the blur

Of hunger

And of the judges and the doctors, made of murder

And of the silence

In place of justice (do grownups exist?)

And of his chained hands, changing hue, growing slender, made of murder

And of my typing hands, made of murder.


I yield, I extend them. Mother, if you want me to withdraw them, tell me what

This man has done. Then tell me what you have done

Tell me what I have done, for once, rubber bullet mother, tell me,

Because I’m fading too, so much more slowly, and choking

On on the paper, pictures and all.

And biting my cheeks


With blood

On what you cook for us.