Monday, June 24, 2019

Other Words for Home by Jasmine Warga

Other Words for Home is a journey of an immigrant. This is written in verse. The perfect genre for the brevity as well as emotion.  Jasmine Warga introduces to the whole new world and takes you along as you keep reading the verse. Written in simple words the impact it gave me is immense for, it's intensity.  There are so many verses I'd love to quote and reread at times. There are a few interesting things I've learnt through this book. In the US the winter break is not called as Christmas break for a reason because, that's the same time, other festivals like Hanukkah, Kwanza are also celebrated. Jewish and African festivals. There are a few Arabic words which I learnt the meaning. Never knew Marhaba was an Arabic Word. Jasmine Warga seems to be a heart touching poet.

Her luck splits open rocks.
I am still waiting to feel like the force
and less like the rocks.

He seems busy
is all I manage.
Aunt Michelle gives me a sad smile.
I think it’s more than that.
But she doesn’t say anything else.
I think again of that Arabic proverb:
He cannot give what he does not have.

In my months of speaking English
while still thinking,
still dreaming,
in Arabic,
I have learned that sometimes
the simplest things are
the hardest things to say.

It’s really awful
what happened to her parents’ restaurant, Sarah adds.
Will you let me know if
there is anything I can do to help?
I think again
of that proverb:
She cannot give what she doesn’t have.
Sarah gained something tonight.
Something she didn’t have before.
And now she is giving some of it
to me.
I will, I say
with a small smile.

The whole book is a gem. Thanks Yash for the suggestion. Would recommend to all the poetry lovers.

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