Saturday, October 31, 2015

This year

This year I will not be hanging, dead arms out on my tree
nor buy candy the color of blood to sooth silk lined stomachs
I will be choosing a way for the rain to fall elsewhere,
without children hugging my feet, or mothers asking me
how and where I got my dress. This year there will be
paler monsters and assorted candy- meant to harm
to ward off those ideas that stopped coming in only at night
this is the spirit of the Hallows, or hollows, or anything that
whistles for the devils and wears the face of an angel.

Friday, October 30, 2015

Chalk heart

Your heart is made of chalk
when I touch it, I am left with
powdery marks on my fingers
eroded particles of you

it might be possible that you
did not want me to have
the dust set over your veins
the ones connecting directly inside

chalk usually leads us
explaining in mired details
the way, but you do not
allow me to read the map

you know I will find a way
to draw, like with a childish
desire, my heart contents
out of the chalk marks surrounding yours

allow it or not, love it or hate it
you cannot admit these facts:
there are those whose hearts are
made of stone but softer

Your heart is made of chalk
of the gradation of those before us
those who will come after us
soft and harsh
glazed in fire.

Thursday, October 29, 2015


The signs to the end of times are clear-
watch the holy books reveal
the changes first on the ground
a great mishmash of fire, storms, mud

animals on all the pieces of land and ocean-
hail, rain storm, repeat
this is how the world will perish
I know it is different

in my country the world ends
every single day, the methods are varied
but death is the same-
an end to the layers of life

this is how our world would end
like two thousand, two millions,
children, women and fathers
marching to the point of shelter
but vanquished with the powerful
choice of one

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Do you remember the windows?

it is far, you say to yourself- these thoughts
close your eyes, relax. Eradicate the blood,
forthcoming and forecasted from memory
you were only twelve
the windows were always extra bright

read the rest of this story here: 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Spitting clouds

There's rain on your face, it softens your features
you are aware of that- but don't use too much water
to save you. You can drown, easily
you can talk to me with storms in your mouth
but you do not need to spit out the clouds.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Tighter the space

You give a woman a collar
to wrap around her neck,
the cold metal above her chest you
call a beautiful necklace

I love my jewelry, wherever it lands
 circulating my spine or my thin long fingers
or the tired, pierced ears
wrap me in jewels then leave me be

all my lovers gave me earrings
big, some sparkled
to hear me better, my love
they said, I knew it was meant to hear other things

you are different, you give me space
no rings, no gold, no diamond
enough room to flutter my wings against your chest
then tighter you squeeze the space around me
till I can no longer see.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

on the art of lying

so many faces, for the same expression
different men and one garment.

What hides in the closet?

There must have been something she wanted-
told me to open the door, gave me a rusty key to unleash it
but a door is not always a door, I objected
a door is otherwise a recitation of the verb- enter

read the rest here:

Friday, October 23, 2015

Rain song

When it rains, I know
there are fairies in the clouds

make it rain, I imagine the fairies dancing 
water has a different perspective of earth

dirty to wash off the remains of the overproduced 
soil, maybe it is a friendly meeting of the clouds to dirt

this is how rain forms, earth receives back 
what it gave for breath-

water, elements, parts of houses in the wind
hurricanes, mud, it depends on how loud the breath is drawn

it rains on the windows of your heart
already cold, by dying embers, water-kissed to drowning

Thursday, October 22, 2015

The worker across from me

Bent over like the end of a river
onto rocks, lifted upon his head
this is the worker, sitting across from me
he knows I am looking, he doesn't complain
but knows Marx might have been his God
but Saint Jude is the one who keeps his watch.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Brief conversations in a known pattern

Three stories fell down over a few heads
nothing too bad, the papers said, quiet the people
from the thoughts in their heads
but I have seen this happen

it is a pattern, I know first the streets
the asphalt, the fire sweeping the grounds
then there are the stories,
then the houses, it is always the same, how chaos builds up

same as when I was twelve
I ask, how are you? All I will get is
your inability to answer my questions with I'm fine-
you are slow, I know it is not my fault

this time, it will be alright, you tell me
we are at war, I say
you want to leave, you say- nothing permanent- just
 for a sunny beach in the middle of a rainy October

change the weather, change this atmosphere
maybe starting fresh will boost up my level
of immunity to the fallen stories
as if it will make you accept what falls from the skies

it won't, I am sure, you answer me- pause:
but I want to take my children to sea
knowing I will have them back with the waves,
with the shells, with the sandcastles-he says to me.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Remote phone

Take me back to when,
we used remote controls for phones
and pressed onto the buttons,
convinced we will hear someone else
on the other side of the line.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Scheherazade's tale

When will you know that you cannot behead me for my words?
Nor can you behead me for yours, because the movement of tongues
Does not respond to the tapering of you give me
Or what you deny me. Deny me the reason to move

Don’t think you can behead me for dancing either
Not when I twirl around my own bedroom
Or in the corners of my head
I do not dance

around you for your pleasure, but rather for my self-gratification
for the thought that my legs can hold me up, and move in any direction
I am willing to undertake, left, right or elsewhere
This is not about control,

this is not about the lack of it either-
we both know that a king will not behead his queen
for a bad story, a bad move.

Olive harvest

The olives are pregnant this year
with more tears, drinking out the blood
that fell, last years' rain and two snowstorms 
that shattered their backs, these aged them
beyond their two thousand years-
they say the season is good, I say

but the season is surrounded by wires
sunshine and long hours of pulling out the best seed
from the ugly siblings, I cannot handle
separation anymore

it is the olive season, for us, peasant with the ability
to articulate the shades of green on an olive pip
we weigh the olive predicting
olive oil, tears, and blood squeezed out

I had begged to pick out olives
but was refused heartache by the sight of
sacrifice compact in an olive
carrying more symbol than status on a tree.

This image is not mine, I obtained it through 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Morning Newsflash

Why does my generation
with the gradation of the skin tone I have
olive based- you ask obsess over the last words said
before the shot, as if this time words can be an answer

newsflash: words aren't always the answer
in a report earlier today they said, half the city is dying
the other half is already dead. I knew, you could tell
that death rises a little out like the morning

to pluck, to reap, to use all those agricultural terms
you use to make it easier for yourself to be consoled
by the idea that banters you, that lets you know
you don't always have the right words

sometimes you do not even have the words
or the struggle to wake up in the morning
shake the ash that piles onto your face,
from the debris of houses, demolished over your head

there are stories you need to remember, facts that you need to forget
like the words the announcer repeats, like a second Hiroshima
half the youth of this city are dying,
the other half is already dead.

Friday, October 16, 2015

when the days went easier

We slept on the floor
we were happy, sweltering with talk
and a buzz outside the window
faking summer
in a glass bottle 

Furry musicals

On the edge of the piano,
walked the whiskers, once, balanced on the tip of tunes
but never fell into music, even when it could.

Third world dream

I swear, heart and soul to send you quiet thoughts your way, said the one who lent the land
I light a candle, praying for the thoughts you send my way
at least candle light glows hard enough to make you ignore
the fact that you wake up three times a night these days
to dream of elephants in the sky, wake up screaming
I am scared. No one is old enough to reject fear. You tell those who refrain from
listening when they don't want to open their ears
this is third world, honey. Live with it, accept you are
 Different, we get the forest,
you get the dessert, we get the milk,
you the sick cow, we leave you to imagine
while we speak your name, attach to you peace
then abandon you when the nightmare roll in and make themselves comfortable
label you trauma, tell you we are sorry, so sorry
but the bombs will keep falling
for peace.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Dignity or what's left of the values instilled in us

Speak about dignity
a rise of the gun or the rise of the sticks
speak about dignity to me,
one more time when people become numbers
speak about shame when
a boy swims, bent double, in a pool of his blood
speak about dignity, that's easier to watch
than move towards from the weight of shame bottling up.

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Keep well

There are a few pieces of advice our mothers hail
after us each time we slam a door shut in their face
their noses too close to the door
smell, the firewood for a long day
possibly weighted down by rubber erasers at three
then smelling on incense at seventeen
then reeking with the boxes of loss at twenty
our mothers know best to tell us before the doors get closed
keep well, from the world.

Sunday, October 11, 2015

A mourning morning

He knew, and so did everyone else
knowledge can be powerful, so much this morning
there's a slit on his throat while he is still hanging
and a pouring of lava into various colors of being

her father could tell she didn't say
good morning today. It was different,
he knew, she wouldn't ask
for the gum that ruins her teeth

not any more, at least
she will not be able to open her eyes
when he calls her name,
no need for double calls before school

he knew, but held on,
the body fragile in his hands, eyes shut
she will not wake up, dad
even if you shake her shoulders
she's sleeping like a princess, for eternity
the boulder on your heart will always take her place.

These are the bedtime stories

Tell me how the fathers narrate a story for their children before bed?
when the child asks his father
about the strawberry beneath his head, or when a little girl
asks her mother about her limp leg, what would be the answer

Forget patriotism and those ideals they plant in you,
the same are planted within your enemy
none of it will matter, when the sack of sand explodes
leaving you open on the fireline

this is the story you will tell, the hero awakes one day
to the sound of a dangerous dragon- if it is a boy
to the hiss of a snake-if it is a girl
the enemy depends on your choice

this is how the story will go, a classic slashing
of the head before the village remains dead
but the story will miss a part
or many, if you were careful to notice

this is how you narrate to your kids,
the stories you don't want to discuss
some leave story marks
while others leave children without parents
to exchange blankets and
a warm story, to ease off nighttime.

Don't be brash

The brash,
his wake, isn't it
nothing but cooked bake, on the table

Friday, October 9, 2015

Water tank

Water tank, filled to the brim
bubbles, here and there. colorful rock, add diver and oyster
there are other fish, only at sea

I fear the day

Hi darling,
I am still well. These will become my little letters to you
I am fearful but I will not say anything, tonight

I will try
to let you know that I am well
if you stop to hear it once in a while

it is not
cold here, not warm
but you don't really care about the weather, we surpassed small talk

how's the distance
between what you hear and what you see
honey, not too far I will write back

this is it,
my fear then, that my days will turn
into a long haul wait, for it to stop

start again, darling. these are my letters for you
I fear the day when I will have to write by light bombs
and their light, is coming soon, I am afraid. xoxo

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Outside my window, war

On the street anger has a different name,
every day a darker gradation of crimson
today's anger was a burnt tire
tomorrow's a child wrapped with a flag, like a soldier
ready to defend without arms,
without legs, left at the refugee queues
the rooms he sleeps in tucked with a feather

at homes, hunger hasn't started yet,
it is a side-effect, they will tell us
like the question was in the bullet's belly
like the answer would be in the tears that will follow
they will know hunger when in a short life they will recall
the pouring of lead, snow in mid-summer

I confess I haven't slept for the past three nights
maybe because this will change my sleep patterns
the inability to ignore what the day brings, full of sunshine and sight
the night comes with its cover, so would my
angry fear, too shamed to confess that at this age
I still shiver at the smell of gas, regardless of less toxic masks

when we shiver we remember our
anger, crimson to purple,
red to green, this is noble- dulce et decorum est
sit back and then collect, like arms- these side-effects
this is war, it knows nobody
yet it reaps what it can along the way.

Metro poem

Mind -
the wind as you descend . It might suck onto your face
like a baby kitten, first needy then tight
to remind you that you are heading elsewhere

read the rest here:

Sunday, October 4, 2015

The news says

there's ash beneath my feet
 the rubble is above me
yet I manage to find you a love song
disguised in a flower 

Saturday, October 3, 2015

Mindfulness bellow the surface

 You are mindful, they say
with the men, as if a line cuts us into two sections
one for the fragile, one for the solid
on the train you give up-you do
not only your seat to the women hand in hand with a child
or the man, half sighted, half dizzy. You leave
 sometimes you wonder if there's a big caution mark on your forehead
the way there are when there's roadworks
since when do you have to be mindful of the tiny details?
only when you look
bellow the surface

Friday, October 2, 2015

Stone and Sand

You come from the sea, with its debris
I come from the mountain, stones on my back
when we meet you will ask, how can your back be so rough
I will ask, how can your hands be so soft,
stones I will answer and you- sand.

Girl abroad

Think of her like this, a born new creature
not into a religion, or paganism
a mixture set to mold, into becoming
our daughters, you say are something else

before the buckling of the in-flight belts
you give her a list of can and cannot
canned tins to be checked regularly
she cannot tread over the many versions
she wants to become between airport transitions

you let her go, taxi is the way- you say
to avoid all that cannot be part of the list
of forbidden, forgotten- pile them up in threes
it is easier to remember that way

girl abroad, she is filled with wind
with an airy desire toward hand in hand
and smiles, maybe all she needs is a
ride home with the assurance that she can-

in the woods, near autumn she knows
you will say- a big girl who navigates the land
for prophets and scavengers- is able to tell
fox from wolf though she never knew how the dogs look

onto a naked eye- she will know how to step
with all  the men, all those men in suits and in smart dress
prose of meaning and of sex
Shoulders rubbed, old clothes scrubbed white

Sunday's for washing the week's mud-
girl abroad, why do you term her differently
for guardianship, you say
that's all you are able to hold, to let go

girl abroad, like me-
like others is the same as your home girl
except with wider eyes,
except lighter because she knows she can.