Union Songs

An Arab's Blood is Mine

A poem by Merv Lilley©Merv Lilley 1963

I dreamed I was an Arab man, and walked round in a sheet
But when I asked for clothes to wear, they cut off my feet.

I dreamed I was a working man and worked for Standard Oil,
Because they bought me as a slave and I was forced to toil.

I dreamed I asked for food and clothes to feed my hungry bands
Who forage through the sandhills' waste-and they cut off my hands.

I dreamed I asked for water then, a bite or so of bread
As I lay upon my native soil-and they cut off my head.

It's not a dream that I have dreamed, I feel their blows on me.
My blood is flowing through the sands, my body stark and free.

I am your brother cut to death, his hands were part of mine,
He was the bravest man on earth upon the picket line.

And I will stand in picket lines and help to fill his place
Because his blood is in my veins, his death is my disgrace.


Many thanks to Merv Lilley for permission to add this poem to the Union Songs collection. It was published in What About The People a collection of poems by Dorothy Hewett and Merv Lilley published by the National Council of the Realist Writers in 1963

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