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A Nation Engaged: Death of a Nation

Marrim Al-akashi

Throughout this election season, NPR and its member stations have been having a national conversation called "A Nation Engaged." The project has looked at central themes in this year's election, including this week's question:

What does it actually mean to be American?

We put this question to some promising young spoken word artists, and we'll be sharing their poems with you all week.

This is a poem entitled Death of a Nation by Marrim Al-akashi, a graduate of Fordson High School. 

Death of a Nation, by Marrim Al-akashi

My parents, the refugees were knives that gave life to a wound Having me dead before the blood dried My skin slashed open once they crossed borders I bled all over what they could have been My body decayed when I learned the language of the soldiers who shot my country down And I am buried under the words I speak in broken Arabic

Marrim Al-akashi is a Detroit Citywide Poet alum. Her poetry centers around her identity as a Muslim American poet of Iraqi descent. She recently graduated from Fordson High School.

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