Middle East Research and Information Project: Critical Coverage of the Middle East Since 1971


For the fifth year you come to us
lugging a burlap sack on your back, barefoot,
on your face the sadness of heavens
and the pain of Hussein.
We’ll receive you at every airport
with flower bouquets,
and drink -- to your health -- rivers of wine.
We’ll sing
and recite insincere poems in your presence,
and you’ll get used to us
and we to you.


We ask you to spend here your summer vacation,
like a tourist,
and we’ll offer you a royal suite
we’ve prepared -- for you.
You may enjoy the night and the neon lights
and the rock and roll and the porno and the jazz --

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How to cite this article:

Nizar Qabbani "An Invitation for the Fifth of June," Middle East Report 146 (May/June 1987).