June 24, 2021– “I wrote about all my memories: how I woke up in the morning with my grandmother having coffee next to jasmine listening to the music of the Lebanese singer Fairuz. I wrote about how my brothers and I walked to school with our neighbors and how we saw a child smoking and then hiding his older brother’s cigarette.
He did not want Syria to be known just for its war. I wanted to communicate the colors, the smells and the complexion of my country and our customs. All of this was etched in my memory, and I realized how suddenly my life had changed since I left Syria. My message is simple; I want love and peace to prevail in my country and to be free from war. “Amineh Abou Kerech’s poem ‘Lament for Syria’ was awarded the UK Betjeman Poetry Prize in 2017 when he was only thirteen years old. She shared the poem at a United Nations event focusing on trauma inflicted on children in times of conflict in February this year. Read her moving poem and learn more about her journey here.133 reads)
To take actionWhat childhood memories do you carry from your own homeland? Take a moment to capture them on paper in stream of consciousness mode. Try not to overthink it and see what comes up.