It is my belief that if you discuss the poems of George Abraham without utilizing the word “Urgency” then you have not done the work the poem requires. In the poems that comprise the suite Song of Ash, Ending in Ghazal Refusing Amnesia Abraham details the fire in Haifa in the Historical Palestinian State. “For God / so loved us smoldering / He birthed us unto an ember / topography, holy & leaking / light; hardly a metaphor at all” and it is in this that perhaps Abraham shines brightest, in the stark fact of the situation illuminated by the lyric. “when a country commits suicide / do we mourn first the or the bodies / ensnared by its brief promise of ? yes, / even cities get tired of waking” writes Abraham, and is this not the heart of the thing? The question itself bleeding and screamingly urgent, that so much is aflame that the prioritization of what must be grieved is unanswerable and yet demands the answer. Here are poems of family, exhaustion, home and its seemingly inevitable unjustified immolation, Abraham lays these all before us and each line demands “Look.” Perhaps what I love best about this suite of poems from Abraham is the willingness to ignore the impulse to begin in beauty and instead begin where the poem must, in need. “Haifa is burning / it is an obvious metaphor”: the genesis of the suite is in the irreducible fact of what is. George Abraham offers poems that sear the eyes in the looking. This is a suite of poems whose imagery and integrity plead us not to look away; in introducing these poems I can only ask the same of you. Don’t look away from the reality, don’t look away from Haifa from the light Abraham weaves from ashes.