Ours is a Country of Words

We have a country of words.
Speak speak so I can put my road
on the stone of a stone.
We have a country of words.
Speak speak so we may know
the end of this travel

Ending of Mahmoud Darwish’s poem ‘We Travel Like Other People’, 1984


“With the help of the people that I got to know in Shatila, I wrote a script which adds a fictional layer to the film. This fictional layer is a visualisation of the desire that lives in many Palestinians' hearts: to return to their home country. As any people in exile, Palestinian refugees’ identity is defined by Palestine, their home country on the one hand, and Lebanon as a temporary residence on the other. The scripted scenes in the film are used to obtain a better understanding of the reality of Palestinians in Lebanon. It is exactly through the words they use, as actors, to talk about the fictional return to Palestine, that we can understand more deeply what it means to them personally to live in exile. By sharing the production process with them, we can tackle this project as equals and find out what kind of film we can make together.”

Mathijs Poppe