A Mad Man Misunderstood

Yasser Arafat reconsidered

Forgive us Yasser Arafat.

Though you were dubbed an Arab rat,
you were a person loved by God
whom we misunderstood.

How could we understand your plight?
You were convinced that you were right.
And maybe, sir, you were correct
more often than we thought.

How could we fully understand
your passion to possess The Land?
We’ve always had a place that we
can freely call our home.

How could we understand your hate
for those who made Israel a state?
We never have been forced to leave
to wander aimlessly.

How could we understand your schemes
when terror leveled walls and beams?
We’ve rarely known the hopelessness
that comes when justice dies.

How could we understand your pain
when peace talks proved to be in vain
and you were branded arrogant
when others also were.

We came to understand too late
why those who loved you thought you great.
Beneath the head scarf that you wore
there was a brilliant mind.