Internationally beloved poet Naomi Shihab Nye places her Palestinian American identity center stage in her latest full-length poetry collection for adults. The collection is inspired by the story of Janna Jihad Ayyad, the “Youngest Journalist in Palestine,” who at age 7 began capturing videos of anti-occupation protests using her mother’s smartphone. Nye draws upon her own family’s roots in a West Bank village near Janna’s hometown to offer empathy and insight to the young girl’s reporting. Long an advocate for peaceful communication across all boundaries, Nye’s poems in
The Tiny Journalist puts a human face on war and the violence that divides us from each other.
The tiny journalist notices
each movement on the far away roads.
Little puffs of dust
find her first.
They pretended not to see us.
They came at night with weapons.
She stares through a hole in the fence,
barricade of words and wire.
She feels the rising fire
before anyone strikes a match.
She has a better idea.
“A moving testament to the impact one person can have and the devastating effects of occupation.” — Washington Post Best Poetry Books of 2019
“While Naomi Shihab Nye’s newest book of poetry offers no easy answers, its questions push well beyond the margin of the pages. What happens when we’re reminded not just of human rights injustices but of the quotidian moments in the lives of those affected? Reminded that they too live in this very modern world, with wants and needs as expansive and equally as simple as our own?”
— World Literarure Today
“From her own understanding and research, her father’s stories and information gleaned from Janna’s posts, Nye creates poetry that imagines the turbulent life of a little girl in a world of war and injustice.”
“On every page, Shihab Nye's insistent call is the same: people, all people, deserve to live safe and healthy lives, free from fear and violence. She mourns, rages, takes politicians to task, but always lands on the side of compassion.”
— Shelf Awareness
“Incisive and unsparing, Nye's poems will buzz in readers' brains long after reading them.”
“This book is more than a book of poems. It is a call for awakening.”
—Lone Star Literary Life
“This poet, always America’s sweetheart, has shared her life with us through her career, warmth, and wisdom — earning our validation — and now, even more, she makes emotion and the world meld, to give an in-depth analysis of her besieged land, letting us know how it appears from inside. In connecting the land and the sea, possibilities and tragedies, poetry reaches the high bar.”
—Washington Independent Review of Books
Publication Date: April 9, 2019
Cloth ISBN: 978-1-942683-72-8
Paper ISBN: 978-1-942683-73-5
© BOA Editions, Ltd. 2019