Mahmoud Darwish was born in 1942 in Barwa, Palestine (now Israel), into a land-owning Sunni Muslim family. Following the Israeli occupation in 1948 his family fled their hometown. He attended the University of Moscow, USSR, for one year in 1970, and then moved to Cairo, Egypt. As a young man Darwish faced house arrest and imprisonment his political activism and for publicly reading his poetry. His collections of poetry include Stage of Siege (2002), The Adam of Two Edens (2001), Mural (2000), Bed of the Stranger (1999), Psalms (1995), and The Music of Human Flesh (1980).
Darwish's awards and honors include the Ibn Sina Prize, the Lenin Peace Prize, the Lotus prize from the Union of Afro-Asian Writers, France's Knight of Arts and Belles Lettres medal, the Prize for Cultural Freedom from the Lannan Foundation, and the USSR's Stalin Peace Prize. He was an editor for a Palestine Liberation Organization monthly journal and the director of the group's research center. In 1987 he was appointed to the PLO executive committee, and resigned in 1993 in opposition to the Oslo Agreement.
In 1996 Darwish returned to Israel after twenty-six years of exile to visit his birthplace, and settled in Ramallah in the West Bank. He is currently the editor-in-chief and founder of the literary review Al Karmel, published out of the Sakakini Centre since 1997.
Biography from: Poets.org