My Father Dreams of a New Country

by | Feb 23, 2016 | Poetry

Lebanon, 1978


America, I see through your glass—
I stretch my hand and my fingerprints
are everywhere. Like leaves the gust blows in.

I don’t have money to feed your fountains
or enough water that it’s never a wish,

but America, I can’t stop drinking you in.
Your trains, their freight like hours,
like the vowels cut from my name.

When will you learn my name?

I’m running to you but I can’t get there
fast enough. I’m strung up on gridirons
and city lights. Aren’t my arms tired of reaching.

Isn’t my back tired of carrying this night around.
Be good to me like a summer rain, I swear I’m burning.


Photo by ArTeTeTrA

About The Author

Ruth Awad

Ruth Awad has an MFA in poetry from Southern Illinois University Carbondale, and her work has appeared or is forthcoming in The New Republic, The Missouri Review Poem of the Week, Crab Orchard Review, CALYX, Diode, Southern Indiana Review, Rattle, The Adroit Journal, Vinyl Poetry, Epiphany, The Drunken Boat, and in the anthologies The Hundred Years’ War: Modern War Poems (Bloodaxe Books, 2014), New Poetry from the Midwest 2014 (New American Press, 2015), and Poets on Growth (Math Paper Press, 2015). She won the 2013 and 2012 Dorothy Sargent Rosenberg Poetry Prize and the 2011 Copper Nickel Poetry Contest, and she was a finalist for the 2013 Ruth Lily Fellowship. She lives in Columbus, Ohio, with her husband and two Pomeranians.