Lebanon is wind­ing road and open highway.

It’s easy to dis­miss my grand­par­ents. Their past is a book of fol­lies and mis­takes. Today they stand before me, spine arched, hands shaky, eyes buried in scales. All they were is all they ever will be.

It’s easy to spoil my chil­dren. Their future is an ocean of dreams and pos­si­bil­i­ties. In my eyes they twin­kle ahead of me, fin­gers unformed, dim­ples like the crook of my elbow, hair shin­ing in a com­ing dawn. They are not yet, yet they’re all I ever will be.

It’s easy to dis­miss Lebanon, and it’s easy to spoil Lebanon. It is my dead grand­par­ents and my unborn chil­dren. Its today is yes­ter­day’s fail­ures and tomor­row’s hopes. But yes­ter­day is not over still and tomor­row is not yet upon us.

Lebanon is me. I refuse to be dis­missed and I shall not be spoiled.

Thank you Julia Boutros, whose Leb­nan played to me as I wrote, and whose voice car­ries these words to the end of the world and back.

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