To celebrate Arab American Heritage Month in April—and the rich tradition of Arabic poetry all year long—browse this selection of poems by classic and contemporary poets.

more poems for kids

 

On Friendship” by Kahlil Gibran 
And a youth said, Speak to us of Friendship...

from ‘Surge’” by Etel Adnan
A long night I spent...

I Belong There” by Mahmoud Darwish 
I belong there...

Kindness” by Naomi Shihab Nye
Before you know what kindness really is...

how to say” by Safia Elhillo
in the divorce i separate to two piles...

the days is numbered” by Marwa Helal
startling semiannual saccharine sensitivity...

The Edge of the World [excerpt]” by Adonis 
I release the earth and I imprison the skies...

Wail of the Arab Beggars of the Casbah [excerpt]” by Ishmael Ait Djafer
The hands of the poor people...

Tries the Grammar of the Arabic to Fit the Language the English” by Noor Jaber
oh teita, the language the english...

The Symbolic Life” by Hayan Charara 
They kept showing up, for days...

The Female of the Species” by Hala Alyan
They leave the country...

On Joy and Sorrow” by Kahlil Gibran 
Then a woman said, Speak to us of Joy and Sorrow...

I Didn't Apologize to the Well” by Mahmoud Darwish 
I didn't apologize to the well when I passed the well...

The Young Poets of Winnipeg” by Naomi Shihab Nye 
scurried around a classroom papered with poems...

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