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Ten years ago, I found myself living on the fringes of Israeli society in a place called Arad. It was a small town populated by Israeli Jews. The area surrounding the town were Bedouin towns and villages and rather isolated. As time passed by, the many worlds encompassing this region began to come together by my feet and in my heart. I grew tired of land-claims and birthrights and saw something bigger; I saw how our flesh and blood tied us together more than anything else. Despite the social and economic differences created by the first world notions of humanity and traditional lifestyles that prevented modern social growth, each and every one of us were seeking refuge and home. Unfortunately, in Israel and Palestine, this sentiment is a universal value but not one which unites the Jew and the Arab.

Peace will only come when we begin to see the other as equal and as deserving of home and refuge.

- Ami Yares


You’re a refugee, almost proud to be free
But you’re just about imprisoned by your poverty
You’ve built a home from the ashes of the old
And in a bag you still carry almost all that you own

Your guard is up and you watch for forked tongues
You’re careful about the careful changing in the streets
There’s a different beat to the rhythm of your heart
And it carries the rhythm of machine gun

In time, maybe you will see people begin to agree
and drink tea with someone you haven’t seen and
In time, you still might look out from behind your wall
at your children in the street

People’s insides can be the hardest matter of all time
Bodies can be broken, but thoughts still carved in stone
From rock to rubble and rubble to dust,
A speck of sand in your eye won’t keep you from much

The words are fire burning all the time
Ashes in the air, on our skin, in our hearts
Maybe these bitter tongues still might make a sweeter sound
But we’re waiting for the movement of this moment to arrive


from We Make the Road By Walking, released November 26, 2015
Music and lyrics: Ami Yares
Viola: Shoshana Gottesman
Upright bass: Gavri-Tov Yares
Slide guitar: Avi Salloway
Acoustic Guitars: Ami Yares
Mixing and Recording: Ami Yares
Mastering: Alain Paul

Refugee is an original composition by Ami Yares, and he is the sole copyright holder. Ami Yares is an ASCAP member.




We Make the Road By Walking Portland, Maine

All songs are available as "donation only." All proceeds go to directly supporting the Seeds of Peace Educators Program for the Expressive Arts.

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