Where The Streets Had A Name
Pan Macmillan, $19.99 pb, 287 pp
and from every dead child a rifle with eyes,
and from every crime bullets are born
which will one day find
the bull’s eye of your hearts.
And you’ll ask: why doesn’t his poetry
speak of dreams and leaves
and the great volcanoes of his native land?
Come and see the blood in the streets.
Come and see
the blood in the streets.
Come and see the blood
in the streets!
So wrote Pablo Neruda, of the Spanish Civil War (‘I’m Explaining a Few Things’, 1947). These words could apply in any place where children are made to suffer and thus to hate. Randa Abdel-Fattah’s Where the Streets Had a Name is a book whose pages resonate with these themes, unflinchingly; remarkable because hers is a book written for children and about children – those living in the West Bank.