Right Now

August 4, 2014
M. Flickr
Photo by M./Flickr

 

Today on the phone,
first time in thirty years,
my friend didn’t know me.
Who? Where do you live?
Where did we meet?
She’s been slipping for a while.
I wonder if that’s how God feels
about Israel right now.
Who are you again?
Did you really suffer?


Photo by Shevaun Williams

Naomi Shihab Nye is the laureate of the 2013 NSK Neustadt Prize for Children's Literature and author or editor of more than thirty books, one of which—19 Varieties of Gazelle: Poems of the Middle East—was a finalist for the National Book Award. Her novel Habibi, which members of the jury read when selecting her for the NSK Prize, has been translated into five languages and received five “Best Book” awards. Her most recent collections include There Is No Long Distance Now (short stories) and Transfer(poems). Nye has been a Lannan Fellow, a Guggenheim Fellow, and a Witter Bynner Fellow (Library of Congress). She has received a Lavan Award from the Academy of American Poets, the Isabella Gardner Poetry Award, the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award, the Paterson Poetry Prize, four Pushcart Prizes, and numerous honors for her children’s literature, including two Jane Addams Children’s Book Awards. In 2009 Nye was elected to the Board of Chancellors of the Academy of American Poets.

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