An Absence in Jerusalem

I have created this group as a safe place to discuss and share the HUMAN experience of the Isreali-Palestinian situation. As political as the foundation of the conflict may be, this group is a place to cross the divide in human terms.

Location: global
Members: 130
Latest Activity: Dec 1, 2011

Voices of Silence

This group is directly inspired from the reaction in iPeace today on the posting of the poem An Absence in Jerusalem. The poem was written following the death of Yassar Arafat and was the expression of how the middle east war zone, which shaped my childhood and adolescence just as profoundly as the apartheid violence in which I grew up, had cut into the 'shoreline of my heart' and my perception of violence, war, aggression, dissidence, terrorism, repression, propaganda, ideology, alienation and dehumanisation of the soul.
iPeace and mepeace live along side one another in parallel universes and it is my goal to facilitate here, a lounge in which the individuals may once more find resonance and meaning. As a poet, the significance how this poem, which is my personal reflection on the tragedy of what is being lost of humanity in this particular, but in any conflict, touched individuals here today, signifies that people are hungry to share, to be heard, to be embraced, to forgive and be forgiven. More than this, Absence in Jerusalem, is a pause in the window of each of our lives, a moment to reflect on our own fears, prejudices, desires and hopes. I would like the poem to be the meeting place of tolerance, discussion, compassion but most of all, a reflection of how fragile our humanity is irrespective of where ever we live, how ever we suffer, love, learn, celebrate and aspire to be the best we were born to become. (September 24, 2008 at 10:18pm)

(Thanks to co administrator of this group David Gould for first posting the poem here..)
Voices of Silence
…of an absence in Jerusalem..

The voices of silence
say it was an easy slaughter:
not even the grapevines
turned their heads away
in quiet dismay....

Skins, perturbed like sour cream
line the edges of the mind
aligned with beds asleep
across the horizon barren of shepards
and their sheep...

Young smiles run dry
and pave your homecoming shunning
thick embraces sodden in the sap of persuasion
where fattened promises drop like
brittle on their tongues

There of a past we no longer occupy
we stole the urgency in their eyes
and from the hip faked such loving
between slack breasts
they could not see the hate for coming

like missiles from birthing crotch
that shook the desert into frozen heat
turning anger into swarming plagues
and life into wet ash cursedly buried in bare feet

And we turn our backs in shame
Up against the executioner’s wall
But all tenderness hung out from the gallows
Fall as dead snakes wrapped in bougainvillea
Fuchsia against the inevitable tongue in foreign drawl

And in the shadows of jerusalem
Voices of the slaughter
speak in the silence of tomorrow
steerless as gazes lost on a winter's chill
tugging up at a defunct sun
and grapevines die for lack of love and innuendo.
©R.Sigel from The Roundabout Years.

Discussion Forum

The work of the UNRWA

Started by G Alexander McDonell. Last reply by gill Apr 17, 2009. 1 Reply

Does anyone know anything about the work of the UNRWA? Are they doing good things? Do you know anyone who works there?(UNRWA = United Nations Relief and Works Agency - they help palestinian…Continue

Noosphere Part 2 History of Concept

Started by Shamsuddin Jim Norton. Last reply by Neri Bar-On Dec 15, 2008. 1 Reply

History of conceptOne of the original aspects of the noosphere concept deals with evolution. Henri Bergson (1907) was one of the first to propose that evolution is 'creative' and cannot necessarily…Continue

Me and the Middle East

Started by Michael John Smith. Last reply by besan yahya ahmed Dec 10, 2008. 1 Reply

Today I am feeling good so I’ve decided to scribble a little about my thoughts on the Middle East. Firstly, like just about everyone, I feel the suffering of the people in this region and…Continue

Words Across the Gap

Started by David Gould. Last reply by Hayyim Feldman Oct 13, 2008. 4 Replies

I have been trying to think my way into some of the things we could achieve on this group and this is my first idea. We have here on ipeace and beyond some amazing poets who can inspire others; with…Continue

An Absence in My Heart-An Invitation for Words from the Heart

Started by myron joshua. Last reply by myron joshua Oct 12, 2008. 8 Replies

"Absence in My Heart" is a place where you are invited to give expression to the absence- or the heaviness of your heart as I tried to do in my first post below.This "absence" is like a hole, a…Continue

Comment Wall


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Comment by ABED MALHAS on May 21, 2011 at 1:11pm


dear friend my lady   I am honored 2 ,TK U 4 UR positive energy ,support , LOVE 2 ART , children ,humanity & CREATION ,


let US Enhance, Tolerance, Cooperation, Understanding, Acceptance, World Peace ,Confidence ,,Recognition ,Human Rights ,Cultural Enrichment ,Positive Globalization - Love & Help the less fortunate - Love & Protect the Environment;

METHOD CASA is initiating six GLOBAL NEW concepts;

- ART OLYMPIC ( equivalent 2 Sport Olympic )



- CASA ( care and share art ) GLOBAL TOURING EXH.



please inform the leaders of  UR country  , children; students; schools; academics; artists; museum; gallery; art outlets; sponsors; decision maker; celebrity; media; industry; etc.

it will benefit U , them , UR  country & the World
Comment by ABED MALHAS on May 21, 2011 at 1:11pm

Nobel Prize 4 Children;

The addition of children to Nobel; It will take a moment of your time but will impact for a lifetime; please send Emails to;; to include NOBEL PRIZE 4 CHILDREN; Imagine the great positive effect- to all World children-student-university-education- culture-innovation-education outlet-industry-media-etc.  & all humanity; let us all join to bring this beautiful concept to reality;  CASA ( 9680  Member / 155 Country & growing ); Imagine a million child  from UR country or globally; 2 send  emails in one day ( they will be at Guinness World records; Please in any event U do try 2 have an internet corner 4 people 2 debate & send   emails 2 Nobel committee supporting the idea of - NOBEL PRIZE 4 CHILDREN;

Comment by gill on October 18, 2009 at 11:50pm
Divided - how I hate the word; Jerusalem - east for thm- west for us - south, north... God never cut His Jerusalem up into portions. It's His Golden City, meant to be loved and revered, sacred and special. NEVER should the blood of any human being flow in those streets. NEVER! DO NOT JUSTIFY IT.. Politicians are killing our beautiful Jerusalem. Pleas stop them.. in God's name stop them
Comment by myron joshua on October 5, 2009 at 9:20pm
Absence in Jerusalem
Absence of calm and level-headedness
Absence of fair-mindedness
Absence of Pure heart.

Religious holidays
Christian Moslem and Jewish
Bring believers in scores

There are those who "warn" of violence
Preparing the weapons of attack at the same time.

Manipulating fear and national pride
Calling on the youth to come and Protect the Holy Site
Creating the atmosphere and setting the stage for Conflict.
Cynically putting stumbling blocks in the paths of the authorities
Who try to navigate these turbulent waters.

Religious Leaders...Guard your Tongues!

This may be the beginning of the next war or the next intifada
and then the blogs will thrive with their attacks...
not against these early seeds, these causes,
but against the tragic outcome.
Comment by gill on March 15, 2009 at 11:20pm
Jerusalem - City of Gold

It took just 6 days for God to create

His wonderful world - so big - so great

On the 7th day - He had a rest -

He'd worked so hard - He'd done his best

He settled back and looked to see,

I need a city.. One that's just for Me

And as He watched in His new setting sun

His eyes looked down on Jerusalem..

Nikki Katz (9)


The news will depict the old city as a place of war. Conflict. Bloodshed.

A place where cultures clash, and old and new don't tolerate one another.

A place of political turmoil. Of suicide bombers. Of death..

But there is another Jerusalem.

A city old and rich in culture, steeped in the golden light of God's eye as He watches with a fierce love, and I know that His city will for all times be a very special place.

From Hillel Street and it's quaint coffee bars to the Holy sites where Jew, Christian and Moslem seek and find their roots, to the Mount of Olives where one can stand and look out over the peach coloured Jerusalem stone buildings, the city is incomparable.

A trip to the Old City, and a delightful barter with Arab stall sellers, and the joy of walking back to ones residence carrying a basket of fragrant smelling fruit and succulent vegetables from the suk.

What can compare?

I bump shoulders with Haredi Jews, bearded Greek Orthodox Priests and bare bellied tattooed American teenage girls. There are old and young, firm and infirm - all on their own private mission.

The presence of soldiers is but a comfort to me.

I contemplate their absense.

I know in time they will be, but for now I see them as warriors of Biblical times, fierce in their desire to protect Go's chosen city.

It's all good..

God chose well.

Jerusalem - City of Gold..
Comment by Lisa on February 18, 2009 at 10:38pm
the fibre of peace, is not being able to mentally or egoically tackle a 'problem' to make it right ..

but living compassion and virtue can action without doing a spontanious response, that creates a movement a rippling .. that touches and shakes appearing resistance.

resistance to what is .. is the very source of violence that creates it.

but if you never take the time or nurture the inclination to explore the immediacey of this living miracle .. so the continuum of pointing outwards .. at the appearing faults in the world .. which is delusionally thought to be seperated from you ... creates only more delusion and resistance ...

it's a circle no matter which way you look at it ..

when you rest in the seeing of it ... the ensuing burning and tearing compassion of the breaking heart ... responds loving and kindly .. to that which it has the patience for .. to wait till the seeing actions itSelf ... and so collapses the resistance to allow the living peace .... of not being able to alter what is 'out there' ... without knowing it only exists from projections of the within ... expressing .. and emptying ...

to invite the fullness, completion .. and inclusivity of compassion we tend to avoid mentally ... because we cannot control it ... and have to stand naked in its luminance ... and weep.
Comment by Christie on February 7, 2009 at 12:32pm
P erfection
E ternal
A ction
C o-operation
E veryone
Comment by David Gould on January 21, 2009 at 2:14am
Futures Child

The pen, mightier than the sword
because long after the old sword
has been relegated to the museum
the pen is still here, working away.

And War what can we say of her?
As she flees from each battlefield
her flouncing skirts stained red…
with the blood of a million innocents.

And now it is, Grace walks the earth
with all her bright children in tow,
I can see you Respect and you, you
little Love and of course there’s Peace.

David © 20th January 2009
Comment by David Gould on January 20, 2009 at 7:42pm
We are the future because we rebuild in the present what we lost in the past.
If today is the day before peace then at last we can begin to dream again,
and that dream will bear fruit that are called hope, love, acceptance and respect.
Comment by myron joshua on January 20, 2009 at 6:50am
Thanks for Afterwards
Thinking like this in the present..
may ensure the Future.

Today is not only the day After..
It is a greater day than that
It can be the day before the peace

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