This was originally posted on my blog in 2015.
Whose gentle winds hovered over the Euphrates,
Surround our souls with support in these days of remembrance.
Strengthen our resolve to never let anyone forget
The atrocities of April 24 and beyond –
The genocide of the Armenian People.
They wanted to kill all of the aunts and uncles and grandparents
And place the very last one in a museum to show their sordid victory.
But they did not win.
Hate was not victorious.
We remember the spirits of our ancestors,
Of our sisters and brothers in Christ,
Marching through the mayhem
Of death, confusion, loss.
We remember their steps on the march to Deir-Zor-
Their empty stomachs and heavy hearts.
Their lives chipped away
As they lost their mom, or baby, or brother,
and endured violations of body, mind and soul.
In gratitude, we remember those who defied their people,
The Turkish and Kurdish souls who rebelled against the powers-that-be
Saving the lives of our kin.
We are grateful for those who stand against the powers today
And refuse to call these events anything but a genocide.
Heal our hearts as the deniers’ speeches become
Louder and louder.
Their words will melt into the pool of justice one day.
We give voice to the trauma that lingered in survivors’ hearts
From the days they left their homes in the ‘Old Country’
To the moment when they saw the face of God.
Help all who carry the stories of the past into the future
So that we will not forget,
And we will not stand by,
As more of God’s children are massacred.
We pray for the survivors of all genocides that burned our earth
And stole our siblings-
Armenia, the Holocaust, Rwanda, Cambodia, Bosnia, Darfur, and then some…
And then some more…
Knowing that God will give them resurrection from the ashes of yesterday,
rising into the winds of tomorrow.
Read my grandfather’s story of survival during the Armenian Genocide here.