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GROUP PSYCHOLOGY By Nicole Vartanian We are a little bit of everywhere Local and dispersed Native and cultivated Armenian by blood and heart We are together Here In the middle of nowhere to the rest of the world But everywhere to us Riding the roads Turning the turns Reaching the obscured landmarks Of a stoic sliver of homeland We are reminded Loudly By the silence in the air That this terrain was a battleground Sacred and scarred and serene Our everywhere and nowhere and here To validate and embrace For as long as we keep Riding and turning and reaching For her Artsakh October 20, 2001 -- Nicole Vartanian was born in Belleville, Illinois. She earned her doctorate in the Sociology of Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and currently is a Fulbright Scholar living in Armenia, teaching and working on issues related to educational policy and civic education. She is on a leave of absence from the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, DC, where she serves as a Senior Research Associate in the Office of Educational Research and Improvement. This poem was inspired by a recent trip to Artsakh. On this occasion, the writer was accompanied by friends that included other diasporan Armenians from the US and Europe, local Armenians, and a non-Armenian who has become Armenian in his own right, through his service and love for the country. Copyright © 2001 Nicole Vartanian