Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Three secrets to opening a bottle of champagne

Shake up the contents, they will glide on your belly
a sweetness flourishing from the end- 
by virtue of odd pressure

release the days from their burden, if it ends well 
it doesn't mean a better start for the next day 
yet don't let hope hold onto alcohol
its a sweet way of getting an euphoria from nothing

be careful, wary of the floor people step on
champagne is tricky
starts with celebration, then smoke popping in the corners of cheer
then fizz
then a kiss
then a vow of a new beginning 

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

On growing up in the middle east

We live in the shade of oneness,  crumpled 
we make a possibility of ourselves, 
stretched like rows of teeth
a set for the parents, 
another for the eyes that follow the steps

when thirsty we drink goat-milk 
and ride camels, for the joy of nomadic life
How many of these elements do you see on my face?
only these moles on my skin remind me of sunshine.  


Monday, December 29, 2014

words and madness

There are days where the poet questions
the company of words- as the questions haunts:
Are these the words, the bits you want to leave
gossiping about you behind your back?

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Coffee

Once you press it against your nose
You can never let go,
It haunts you, like a thousand galloping mares
Brisk, its vapor rubs onto your senses – a wake from begotten dreams.
Hot, beneath the fingers
It is a world of its own
Drink me, or puff over my head- I ask only for your breath
The grounds, grounding you onto the chair

Or the bus
Drink me,I will make the world less hasty
drink me- I am the answer to last night's problem
and the paging pain above your neck. 

Saturday, December 27, 2014

know & do

Knowledge is separate from practice
to know something is to keep it
to practice something is to feel its core

she knows they will both become an item
for keepsake, like crumpled leaves and pebbles collected
a childhood intake of nature's warmth

nature's warmth, they exercise keeping the weather,
 most unpredictable clear in the corners of the house
vivid in the crooked smiles, this is how practice looks like

organization is the root to perseverance
only set clouds rain down, only lean wings can fly
but mixture mostly gives best results, like cake and pressure diamonds

if only, she thinks they could keep their dreams
separate for a while, the same way they do socks
 tuck them in  different drawers, code them by color and use.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Jealousy

Fire in the eye
a clasp on the mouth by the upper lip-
silence roasts her alive
jealousy, a lick of flames on her ankles.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Manger's Son

manger's son
born in the cold,
sheep for Mary!
Crucified by watching the news
of earth on a daily basis.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Chipping

Nothing is clearer than the chipping of crystals
like the corners of the morning
rising, it dismantles slowly
every strike is visible
every ray catches the eye
that's when you start noticing
incomplete residue

the cracks start at odd angles
for reasons undefined and unknown-
you cannot really tell when a vase is about to break
until it does
then you bite the dust for being slow to the rescue

'if it is not broken, don't fix it'
that's the general rule
but there isn't anything that details
the potential of readiness
what if you are ready to mend things that await
breakage?, a lamp just about to turn grey
a skilled player's violin string
better leave things till the last moment

maybe what divides us
is really our ability to see the chipping cracks in the crystals
maybe we should change the rules at times
for the sake of precious metal and sentimental value gifts
and other things, like wood chipping early
maybe we should say instead
if it is not broken
don't wait for it to break first
for you to fix it in leisure time.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Special occassions

Chase the statue at the bottom of the temple
tell it I refuse the pineapple and coconuts and the exotics
of land categorized like spices in plastic container
I've seen exotics like me, learn to ride a bike,
learn to write and cook with one pan
tell the statue I turn my back at carvings of exotics
because in flesh I know a girl with a pen in hand
and flowers in her hair, only on special occasions.

Monday, December 22, 2014

There's more

You hang too low,
push too forcefully at times
the end of the rod-

you never realize that at some point
there's breath to catch and there's more than
the conversation of flesh and bodies
there lies a marriage of stars and mud
unbound by attempts
unfailing by trial

Sunday, December 21, 2014

two steps

At ten he said he wanted
to step outside the lines
become a difference, his own
so he became the first pilot of paper-planes

At fifteen, he was sure
muscles pave the way to life's successes
women, good health, an idea of beautiful
he joined the line of planes up in the air

At twenty-five, he fell in love
with one woman, one beer and movement
to move forward in a straight line
he had to leave the air and land feet first

in two years he became the step between
the bars of music, the sand-bags could rest
chasing the stars, and rotating over and over were a sign
of days and scars present on the ground in memorials
he still breathed

one day he stepped with a woman's hand first
pressed onto his left breast-pocket
he lead her onward, as they battled
forwards and backwards in rhythm
wooden floors and flashing lights
tickers of times, counting down like a bomb
an explosion of melody and magic

that day he became the ideas he fought against, fragility
and tenderness like cotton and a mover-
he put his learning in a card-box and sent it flying
to exotic lands where bombs drop and blood derails
he knew he had the answer, to how he became different

at twenty-seven he won his battles,
the three medals and the photographs on his desk reminded him of the question
difference lay in his shoes, the secret in his toes
he was the boy who learnt the art of war
before learning to put press his feet together
and lead a woman in step, on the wooden dance-floors attached to earth.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

the homeless wolf

Hunger and thunder- outdoors
the wolf  of the pavement,
collects the moon by shades of the lamplight

Friday, December 19, 2014

Broken mirror

He could not handle the thought of a century, with luck closing down onto him
only because he broke a mirror, a mere reflection of his half eaten face
not one he enjoyed watching anyways
almost a century and it was not his mirror he broke
perhaps it is not bad luck he feared but revelations
of the ugliness it takes to break glass surfaces:
once complete and smooth
in an instant, powder unscented

Thursday, December 18, 2014

The growth of nemesis

You can grow nemesis, like flowers
water hate and foster the rest under your skin
enough irritants can make you a professional
in the scheme of detest

I never developed the desire of hate
but like humans, existing
I fell into the trap of developing
a nemesis

my teacher, the dark haired woman stopping at the taps
of my kindergarten joy was the victim-
I sought running water and running sands
mixed them to make a sea in a sandbox
and I made a sandstorm around my flat-ironed uniform each day
and when Miss B washed off the whirlwind
I planted the first seed

as I walked alone, away from the sandbox
to my house, the roads widened and filled with other children
packed at the gates, there awaited a  boy who glared at my red apple,
the same one that kept the doctor at bay
as I embarked on the first bite, Robin Hood had the apple
 with his arrows  and for him the roots started to spread

When I arrived home, my sister had taken my doll
into her mouth, half of its hair spread on the floor
clothes cut up like confetti, what I owned- my child shredded
my sister wore a smile the size of a tennis-ball
as she pointed at my loss, I didn't talk,
I  howled and  inside sprung  a stem and a few green leaves
the budding stretched when I stemmed higher

When I brushed hair off my moth eaten, acne face
a few years down the road, I still saw my nemesis
eye to eye, her tin smile, yellow and twice my size
shrunk as my pimples grew and by then
my tree was tall, proud and held out
branches, birds careful nests making a possibility of new breeds
 squirrels hiding the last chestnuts of frigid weather and even rabbits
burrowing off what falls to earth from above

I happened to catch my reflection, on a walk near the river last Monday
it was a normal Monday-  one where you realize a week had gone
the job you mostly detested, worked your nerves but your reflection
greeted you, like a polite neighboor
and as I peered into the water, I saw the top of my tree
the nemesis would not budge
how did the enemy become
much like me?

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Mantra

Chant it like a mantra
repeating the rise and fall of notes
those things you failed to say
while I was in the room.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Geminid

tonight the clouds look confused,
 too much light
a shower of stars

Monday, December 15, 2014

Hide & Seek

one to three you count
for disappearance, like a pinch of salt into water
dissolve into the walls, 
behind the rust of the barrels 
dissolve into anything
that keeps cover for the sake of fun 
to become everything
this is how the first part is played-
hide well.

Search and research where you least expect
the tree's branches, the dog kennel, 
the room with spare tires 
use the pronouns, up, over and under 
inside the hollows of trees and outside the lines of the clouds 
look carefully, this is how you seek

find and lose, who cares- really
if what you lose is for trivialities 
another way to kill time, scavenging for valuables in rubble
we've hunted at these childhood plays too long
till dusk, till the voices called louder than wolves
but we still care,to find what we lost or hid on purpose

have you looked for me when you last closed your eyes ? 
I have been out in the light for a while
I'm sure you've seen me
If I hide again, will you come seek me?

Saturday, December 13, 2014

The song of waiting

the song of waiting starts low with a standstill
it has not departed the lips of its singer
it has not yet arrived, yet its forming down the throat of a songbird

a chain of paper decoration,
growing slowly out of dust-
into arrangements not found, untouched

Chained, we are to the tune that escapes
repeating onto our heads like drumming
it is one we must bear-

like a state, unchanging
by features of the harsh weather
and the ticketing of faces on the morning gates

A transit of solo passengers,
and desolation in islands, remote
it is a long pause

cut for its own purposes,
we cannot understand the need
for snow to bask in the seconds

from points of starts to
points of end
we move yet

the song of waiting is loud
audible to those who expect
time to bounce back, like a boomerang.

Over the wind

Hug screens, sigh,
send kisses into vaccums - it is a new norm
both sides can hear the same river-
one at the source, the other at sea
both ends recieve the same recycled water, some soft cushioned pebbles too
this gush we hear, it is there yet missing from us
it rests on the last word you say-
what love sounds like over the wind,
nowadays.

Friday, December 12, 2014

Prespective

Gain, more- lose less
is the child's logic in games
save little to avoid mess
is his mother's logic, with games and wooden toys at the bottom of the bag

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Race

race
not the end of the run
not the boy with the lumpy leg at the end of the road
nor the girl with 'slanting eyes'- born of exposure to the sun
nor the one wrapped like a toffee, for God's rule and self satisfaction
race not the Indian with a feather on his cheek
nor the African with exotic head-wraps
not the Arab with a belly dancer on his lap
race, not the fool who makes believe and traps himself
into a higher chair in the name of mightiness
not the burdens we make for others to carry
while we watch them with eyes turned out, for want of pity
stop racing now

Race our ability to pinpoint difference
for the sake of fun

race it to death

gifting gifts

Kisses half dipped in air
like poison apples
for her special day

Budding

The bud knows at its heart 
there's time to crack open, to what the wind brings 
pollen has to bleed,
the arms have to shake 
and  petals,fall on little girls' hair 
before the birth of almonds

Like buds, I celebrate 
cracking open to years winding 
carrying with them pollen, whiffs of other people
it is the petals that do not shake in me
they change color with severe weather but fail to fall 
on nicely combed pigtails, they refuse to hide in the corner of braids 

I am stubborn, I know- 
too hard for my own good but at least 
my almond comes 
at its own pace, with a different taste: 
sweet when let to cool with the grazing sunshine
bitter when squeezed out of me.

Monday, December 8, 2014

mainfestations of detachment

Like a pinch, it would feel, that's what doctors warn
before injecting aliens into the body
it is sudden, the rush of fear

Like a thorn, soft and bendable
the prick hums with a newly discovered sense of life
it is landing, cushioned in a field muddier than your regular track

Like strangers in lonely cities
roaming the corners for an old phase, phrase or luck
it is the realization of singularity within the multitude that nags for satisfaction

like the end of a spindle, that's the reality of detachment
by bullet-holes, needle ends and distance
uncommonly common, it is hard to remain hopeful
when metal cuts through you.

Sunday, December 7, 2014

Warmth

They say warm hands are the route to a warm heart
without fail, heat isn't accessible- at least warmth is not
being in heat doesn't mean you are warm
humans can tell. can smell warmth. Especially in comfort and grace into small sensitivities:
bed-time stories, sing and cook meals and hours of sunshine 
signs of warmth. True warmth is when you seep into your skin
on an old sofa, after a hard day's work-
feeling for the thunder that just exited your head. 

Saturday, December 6, 2014

definite future

There's a limitation to the plans you can make
towards a definite future-
beyond the clothes picked out for the next morning,
beyond tomorrow's meal-
there are issues to discuss
she was aware, if only she had enough choice in the matter
sometimes, haphazardly we end up in situations unlike us
binge buys and binge drinks and the lack of drinks and sales
for the royal hunger and the royal coin
we cannot control everything, that's how she'd start
she figured by explaining that the family will be expanding
and for that, she'll have to wear the same dress
until a definite future shows it tails
on the horizon

Friday, December 5, 2014

#smart, #notsosmart

#smart

the exercise of morning devotion
to the sun, early rising
coffee in hand and a newspaper in the other
a choice or habit- does it matter?
it is a smart way of life.

#notsosmart

now-
the amount of time wasted
over trivialities beginning with morning devotion
to screens, phone above the nose
you shut out the world as you gaze
at a stimulation to a way of life
it could be both realms

#smart

dressing is a part of the morning
like calling a name game-
 a ritual it becomes when the colors
are associated with shades of mood
like roses are red, who insist violets are blue?
in color we recognize the light that's left out

#notsosmart

shuffling into an old pile of yesterday
mashed same way as a parent's favorite potato recipe
it is another morning ritual some skip
like a stone hurled towards a lake
it is better to throw bits and bobs everywhere
there's order in chaos

#smart
goes about light-headed, always prepared

#notsosmart
leaves it till the last moment, enjoys the core.

Thursday, December 4, 2014

Nana's Tailsman

Gold and earth are not the best of mixtures
hide your treasures in earth, that is what humans did for years,
earth seals your treasures from misery, it had protected gold with its variant forms
combined, gold and earth will protect you, child. Nana whispers a prayer to the wind
dresses a golden locket under my locks of hair,
dips me in gold and earth to ward off
envy, evil eyes, greed and magic
she leaves a prayer on my neck
she leaves it up to me to decide
if I will wear prayer forever around my breath
to ward off envious eyes
evil greed and dark, dark magic.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Spirit of Christmas

Magic and sparkles
all caroling, angels singing on the streets
joy to the world, joy, joy,joy
flails the little thief boy
his joy, a purchased pair of pajamas
and a plastic pug for company.

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Critical age

So many years have handled the badge 
of a critical age, like an era of war, 
or an unprecedented piece of writing sprouting without necessity, 
as if there is a time-limit to beauty 
as if there's an expiration date to oxygen
there's a certain end to all ends- that's sure 
but why the gentle reminders?

because so much depends on the critical eras for men 
and more for the women, it seems;
a  love that ticks on a certain number, it seizes to be under other circumstances 
an unfulfilled promise of eternal settlement
and the children, must you let her not forget? 
 her future children will refuse birth after a certain hour
and the loss, the hole she will evidently face
unlucky, tsuk tsuk- shame 
too old now to dig for happiness she's hidden purposely 

Youth falls onto years, it cannot be bottled nor contained 
and such is the belief in the next sunrise
clairvoyants, in our own rights we sleep in an eternal wait, 
foreseeing the sun  without realizing that sleep might erase warmth-
we wake up fearing time's hands

Much depends on our ability to sleep
to dream, out of the handles of critical numbers
I too dream out of circles, cans and rounded dates
there are critical moments in my days, file-dividers separating the hours
into sewing and ripping, 
into touchable and edible- in me  there isn't a deadline for time 
I am fine 

You talk to me of critical ages, meaningful to growth
when will you realize that you lay dependency on  a woman, 
who repetitively fails to decode the numbers?. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

New month

Turn the page, listen
to the silence of noise and the hustle
of the wind as it flips over your calendar,
the one next to the window, awaiting
the birth of a new month

Sunday, November 30, 2014

Away from the mind

Forgetfulness is a virtue of the strong
man made muscles witness the war to
leaving the old and starting fresh as a bud
forgetfulness is a virtue of the strongest seeds
especially when the wind carries them to foreign soils.

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Just because you are taller

Listen to what poets say
especially when they hold your hand
on a far away building, near sunset to tell you simply
secrets brewing. You are special, they say those in metaphor
code their I love yous in similies
but I am dropping roses into your lap
swilling with my emotional babble around you
there it goes
I love you- wait--just because you are taller
it doesn't mean it hasn't yet reached your head
it hasn't yet tickled your being down to your Greek lined toes

or has it? does it really matter what oversensitive poets actually say anyway?

Friday, November 28, 2014

Black Friday

Friday of shame, 
true one makes money to spend money
to make it again, like recycling it is an endless, 
shameless part of being one midst the many, money generating machines
nine to five, life starts after meetings and reporting
and coffee chats with Clive who hates the job but likes the money
and Dan who hates the wife but loves the boss' red heels
hate, love and money are relative things- this said from tongues that taste
rice stewed in holy waters, forgetting that the farmer cannot taste his produce

this Friday I have seen shame packaged in colorful paper-bags
and presented under trees or stored away for further use
Shame, walks the street with bags full 
but doesn't spare a penny or a look 
for the ones who sleep in rags.

Tenderness

excerpt from a longer poem under construction:

When you saw me on the street, a few days after I left you to your musing
you gave me one kiss, on my right cheek
tenderly it landed, like birds scraping morning dew from the branches
but I could smell dust on your shoulders
and I felt the gunpowder stamping itself over my dimples.

Saved from disasters

If I could tell you, I'll start with what saved me disasters
the time of knee scratches and boyish hair,
it was time for football games till dinner
the first marker of my salvation
innocence

it might have been possible that I was spared because
I was born a girl without any expectations
there were no demands of intelligence,
nor aspirations. Sets of pans, stamina and a quick heart
were necessary, stitching and knitting were preferable- if possible
holding my ear out  to the wind adds to my repertoire
for my second savior was weakness

you can argue that what saved me was charm,
an old talisman place by my grandmother underneath my pillow
to ward off the ills of other people,
eyes, ears and insignificant body parts that meant to cause harm
fists and brains and growing pains-
perhaps my grandmother knew what I needed to avoid
for she handed me down, luck

but eventually I might have saved myself, unnecessarily
with soberness I fought off nightly visitors: dreaded dreams and ghost tours
with long sleeves I kept away from the sunshine
with womanhood I warded the evil eyes
and with all this time I preserved my way out of harm
my savoir was myself

one thing still hold me by the collar-
I might have escaped danger, yet nothing saves me
death by waiting.

Thursday, November 27, 2014

breaking the cocoon

I will listen to your words I vowed, once I finish my third chocolate
I unwrap and the sound of tearing flushes the noise of the jabber you send my way.
this is how I deal with unpleasant conversations
add sweeteners, it diffuses ignorance and displeasure
flip it over the head- that anger and spank it  toes.

this is quick success, a first tear to the sac around me,
coffee, cigarettes and alcohol seem tempting
but they age by the sip. A thousand lives and visions
reproduce with the sharing of coffee, burning
of cigarettes and cleanse of alcohol
yet by morning light, you can only see
folds of skin crumpling at the corner of a smile or its opposite
another slit to the protective body I have weaved around me
since birth

I do admit I am tired, though ripe as a kiwi
I unfold the dark pips and shake them towards
any willing visitor, any seeder, for the needing
need supersedes growth, ask anyone
when you deeply desire bread, you do not think of your ragged shoes.

but before I turn into another version of the same wreckage,
 taller this time, less tolerant- I allow myself enough room for simplicity:
I stretch longer in bed, covered or uncovered,
then make of art a possibility, paint, draw, write
sing in the shower it is all the same
before I beg for my own salted bread- I move
movement sounds easier when you are light on your feet

I will break away from what I've learnt, I will punch the hidden sacks around my ribcage
 I tell you
despite your inattentive ears
I may sound like a foreigner
but I will shower and rid myself from my accent tomorrow,
when it manages to finally arrive.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Writing home

This is an excerpt of a full published poem:

What can I tell you? You have always been bigger
wilder, stretching beyond my ink and papers.
Every time I try to write you
Photographs jump in my head
Little devils masked under ‘ideas’
It is then I pause in fear
I fear not you: but my eyes scanning you
I fear not you: but my  grammar failing you
Because every time
I hold the pen
You get to the core of my head,
Every time I press on the pen, it bleeds.

you can read the rest of the poem here.

My culture, my world

Dear readers,

It's been a while without any direct contact from me. I have been meaning to give a massive shout out to one project that I am very passionate about because it contains a lot of my culture and heritage. The project is a webmag/ blog that aims to introduce the world to the culture of the Middle-East and it is called Infita7 (Openess). I am incredible lucky and grateful that the amazing team has recently published a few poems for me. Please feel free to check the great work here:

http://infita7.com/

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Mystery of the Gondolas

Pour out the air, juvenile child- labor
it is the time  for the bridges of sighs and the bawls of the Gondolas of Venice
the time of nude culture has gone past us and while you, juvenile- labor
the tourist eats your bread, feeds the rest to the pigeons.
It doesn't just happen here in Venice, this is universal
how money turns into bread, into puffy hot loaves that are consumed by travelers
while you crush your hands on the boat's handles and pedal door to door for the swallow's milk
impossible possibilities on the wooden planks of the Gondolas
this is the world through a glass, recycled for you: other's leisure
You watch, simple. What you know floats down and sighs, the bridge is proud of its name
even your language feeds on water, my child. Water fills empty stomachs but leaves room
for the later hunger at midnight, Europe time.   The sun is closing its eyes, this is your last mystery guests for the day brown-eyed you'll forget in the morning

What can you do for the mystery of tomorrow's bread but imagine Venice, the night

you, a sole loner on the Gondolas that sail the same waters to a corner mattress named home.


image found on Google. 

Side effects

The mud stays these days
it makes its way upwards, a centimeter each day
it has reached the foot of the houses, made its presence known while the city sinks lower
into its claws. Earth smells prudent yet it reeks mud, a sure sign to the end of times.
It doesn't change much at the playgrounds,
there is less grass but not enough muck can curb feet from playing
 the lost boys, march onward to mud they will return.

In the last three months they have seen an incredible rise
in dirt and water, inseparable. There isn't enough dirt to seed,
there isn't enough water to sip, one seeks the tops of trees these days
only leaves cup their hands to save the drops
for the competition of birds and boyhood
There's an abundance of unwanted  material:
there's leftover sand from the shore, brick  and shredded windows, the stench of iron remains
but the lack of basics is essential:
the city is grey and brown

The faces are grey and brown,
no interludes of rest,  wood and ashes are the same
wood makes ashes and ashes blend in mud, to cement the bases of houses
and the foundation of the hungry, cold faces of children
roaming the fields for sunshine and for hairdryers
they scavenger the grounds for heat-
their faces have colored, grey with clouds and brown with mud
it is not just rain here, it is the end of times
and the boys with grey shirts and brown faces still play
to mud they will return.

Mud is a side effect of rain, of summer's typhoon after the bombs. Moments past the smoke, you see the screams and the bodies. You notice the rebel, the rubble but not the clouds with bellies of rain.
I certainly cannot foresee the forming of ash, slowly
nor the brown faces drained
I see blankets for roofs, and hear tin clanking
refuge and alternative homelands are another side-effect, of the eternal floods
 tents that are perched here shelter the children
from possible pain.

I lean to one of the grey faces, a child of four years of typhoon,
I ask him his wishes for the new year. He smile and points to where the mud cements
three walls that are left standing against the wind
Here stands the foundation of a house
didn't humans first build their houses from mud?

in front of my eyes, the lost boys rescue an elder from a fall
in a pond of sweat and poking screws, I avoid the man's eyes
instead focus on the blob of brown on my red boots,
I am dirty for my lack of movements, who cares?
to mud we all return or possibly to ash, eventually
Is there someone looking at us beyond the grey?
who closes the open taps in heaven
when the angels weep for too long?

Saturday, November 22, 2014

On stopping my writing to you

What if my first writing was a lie
the very first attempts at cursive, jokes of destiny toward
happenings I can no longer hide or paint over with a thick brush
thick colors, maroon and ocean blue over the damage that leeks from images
hues deeper than I can understand at a fragile age

it is a possibility, don't you think that rocks cannot stop bleeding
the way stitch-and-needle. Sewing is a way of reattaching
two ends of earth together, like bridging gaps that become without question
definitions of lack.This technique has been tested on punctured intestines too
I have seen the news of you. This sewing is too good, it works unlike my Teta's,
my grandmother's advice; she rubs olive oil on three-inch wounds,
olive oil has been her plaster, words have been mine.

No, you cannot rent my pen to write pages of lament and eulogies
to your bullet-holed poppies, and to the wheat crushed under foreign boots
when such delicateness dies and you chose the sword, all mightier
don't crawl back to ask for a pen, brittle or red with fury
Me and my pen,we are free of you, only because I chose my distance

I shall stop in instant my failure at addressing you in writings,
I will burn the letters, destroy the pictures and stop listening to the radio
like I can't because it is beeping an end of another life,
another house crumbling like a five year old's Lego, and a family is in the rubble
 as I head towards my classroom to learn how to write
you, worst is Teta's olive oil burning brown, going down the drain
what's happening to me?
I don't want to know what happens to you.

I live you, eat you, preserve you and now I want to revoke you
the way a body hisses at poison. I am tired because I know you deserve better
and I know I can no longer make you beautiful, make-up doesn't hide disasters
Well, maybe I need sleep instead of these ramblings onto cropped ears,
Maybe this is another lie I try to cover the only way I know
with words.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Winter wishes

I want the sunshine in winter,
I know I am asking for much, it may not serve me
I want a wave of warm glow
cracking my cheek like it's a piece of bread, searing .
I want a summer's sun across the clouds.
and I am greedy,  I request daylight , flowers that bud with dawn
and children on the fog-free street corners.

In sunshine, I want to walk with you through the woods
howling with vixen and moss,
with its laughing brooks and blossoms of lilacs
towards the meeting of our feet
towards where you rest to watch my shadow dance

I want the rays to hit your head,
reflect our common ground,
you will see me beyond the covers, peeling
my other skin. My skin can become your blanket,
this way I can wrap you around my finger and pull to pain
you, the loose thread of the chain of light.

I want to follow you,Theseus into the maze
again towards the sun, once more
I want to be the ball of thread and danger that pulls you back
to safety.  I want a clear sun this winter
after the clouds roll in,  too many twigs and sodden leaves
 gather near my window. For minutes, they become flesh and blood
you, or similar the warmth I need, even if these twigs
like the phantom winter sun are a stone's throw across my desk
I want the eye of the sky,
the father of the stones, the mountain where you lie
unhinged by the wind that ruffles your head and blows notes
blows notes and sounds into my deaf left ear. 

Thursday, November 20, 2014

nightmare

lately I cannot sleep
there are unusual objects and subjects falling down into my dreams
like last night, there were sounds of fire consuming what it could.
Rage and darkness, it was a case of hysteria and noise 
inane
the buildings like cardboard were at my feet. there was a blond baby
in my arms, he was crying.
 I felt his warm urine trickle down my arms as I warmed his nose
 even if it was a warm November.
Babies need warmth in all forms.
I shut his ears, but there was blood,
 and there were members of my family all grown,
frozen in childhood. and there I was at the end of my bed, gasping, trembling
these nights I cannot sleep
when and if my mother answers her phone
the first question I'll ask her will be:
mama, when will I stop seeing?. when will I start to sleep again?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Neighborhood

In a little street, in a small town lies a row of houses
made with red bricks, long hours of studies and nights of laughter
in the houses, little rooms that have  minds of their own
a light goes off somewhere, another goes on
a laught is heard in one house, another sheds a million tears
some asleep, others awake
 this is how the neighborhood lives
I live on the sixth house that rises late and sleeps late and eats late
and is two hours behind the ticking of the clocks and the rush of the universe
I share the house with a thick-haired boy who has music for breakfast
and beer for dinner. He is my neighbor.
Like our house, we never cross paths
I am a late riser, I keep to notebooks at night
and light sleep in the mornings while he keeps to cooking
but early sleep, like a grandfather in a rocking chair.
There's a boy in my house that I do not hear
breathing, or laughing and I do not dream of hearing him crying
maybe the sounds I hear at night are just my own,
weaved from imagination to who could have been walking the planks of my wood and Gibson house
would it be the boy? or a trace of the man he grows up to be?
it might be the man in him I refuse to look into;
there are clues everywhere, the beard he has, the xl t-shirts, flipped out and piled into the wash machine or the smell of man deodorant around the mail box.
Seeing is believing and I need a proof, but I know this man exists and we are bound to meet
once more.  I only see him when there's smoke rings
because certainly one house is burning down

Today is not for poetry

Today is not for poetry,
it is for the mundane habits
like long sleep, procrastination and worry
and ailing health at eighteen, today is the day of growing
pains out of the back of sandpaper
it is the same proposition for anything
other than the creation of words out of sand
like sandcastles and stones, you pick them out of your fingernails
these creations are fragile,
these are things that can be easily washed out
with salt, vinegar and a little bit of water for the wounds

today is not a day for poetry
because poetry prompts the creation of beauty
and I wake with a disaster each day
fresh like cream it piles up
mounding like a snowball at the back of my head
my lack of passion is a disaster in the making

today is not a day for poetry
it is for my earthy desires,
for making a meal out of old spices alone
today is a day of celebration of givers of joy
like chocolate, and dance and reading
but today is not a day for poetry because
poetry comes light and goes heavy
the same way a rock falls into a pound
falls light on itself, falls thick on the murky waters.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Dreamcatcher

Allow me the weight of your dreams,
sleepy head. Hand over the details,
the sounds, the colors and the fury
I am watching over the quality of sleep
and the clarity of the vision. Hang me onto your wall
like a lucky charm, like the picture you hang round your chest
hang me above your head, near the window
where the breeze will ask the bees to join your dreams
wrestle with me way after dawn, and dust my hollowness
send a thrill down the feathers and the beads, holy totems of my ancestry
you have given me mind to filter your dreams
I care and I will,
 I promise
I will rotate around myself, tangle all the horror of the universe
in my stomach, let it rise like bile
 for you to sleep soundly in the clouds.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Fireflies and a man

Don't I, pray living bug?,
he asked the fireflies that grazed by the windowpane one evening
he heard no answer
sure, for winter is a wonder.

Speak no evil

Nothing disturbs a woman's loneliness more than a cry
into her being,
levitating out of her, like a distant sound
growing, gnawing around her
They say women are tongues on a roll,
bordered only by a set of lips, a set of thick ruby red painted lips
to them, she's preached womanhood
said  that a woman is more than body parts
more than a negation or a rush of fantasy
and simply a woman is not made by her tongue
rolling in and out to cause injury.

he, the master of tongues hears her,
once, twice, he ignores her
She knows the most destructive weapon is another human
or parts of humans at least, the unthinking brain
the unbent tongue have put her in the hot fire before

you cannot escape what you create, she's realized too late
but you can stop speaking evil
when you quit inviting the devil to tea
 under the arches of your house.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Five commands to make you listen

Wave to me from your side of the ocean
I'll send the starfish your way
they will guide you to treasures,but I will drown you near shipwrecks
it's more interesting to see fish making dreams
into bits of wood

Tell me of the ink smudges we leave
like footprints on floorboards, I promise I won't clean after you
or after us, there's evidence in steps
only clear when we look behind or ahead
if we look at all

Draw me missing one body-part,
an arm, an eye, a heart. Don't fear cutting me on paper,
I've handled worse scars, I've handled the jab of a knife on my kncles
and I was prone to being drawn
in the dark

Teach me how to act abnormally normal,
the way a smart advert stuns you with its shimmer
that exaggeration of regular needs:
 bread, salt and butter
I'll return your lessons by showing you how to survive


Allow me to nurse you by the gazelle's milk
sweetness in your stomach, stolen from a sitting antelope's pride
leave me space to speak to you from a horn
or maybe even a trumpet, like the heralds
maybe you will then hear
the punctuation in my speech.



The option

I will stop saying you are absent
because I am calling to a rocket
when I smell the exhaust's fumes

wasting away like youth,
like the ends of the earth
chiseled to its core- that's what remains
in conversation and passing greetings

I promise to stop reaching for the shallowness
Maybe I should stop sending you mail
maybe I should stop coloring my world orange,
the color of missing, the hues of the leaves that crunch
under my head when there's only you inside
on a windy morning

Maybe missing is not about degree
maybe we cannot measure how much one
of us misses, or if one feels absence at all
perhaps measures are set for things, non-human

and because missing cannot be measured I leave it in your hand
the only weapon I've been holding against your warm palms,
the option to reach out for mine.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Seeds

When the farmer throws the seeds
he knows, with his heart of hearts
that his reaping might be halved,
by weather and by animals
and by the seeds' will to grow or shrink
like the farmer, I know
not all the seeds I plant will grow
but I still plant and wait
for the answer to blossom
when in season.

On winter's early afternoon

I'll begin by telling you this:
there's something you cannot unveil about me,
It is true you've seen my face before
but you cannot remember where and you know it
I read you by the flicker of your eyelash.

I'll tell you this, I looked after you
when you were hung over, head in the bushes
searching for the end of a cup,
you were busy with a berry to keep the haziness at bay
because you only knew few cures to life:
your feet and your mouth.

I was not sent after you to fend off
the rocks that fell your way
I lifted them because I needed to walk straight
and leave no trace of feet, nor breath behind
the walk you took was yours, pure.

I walked away from you when it rained
I couldn't handle your shivers, like a little bird's
nor your homeless sighs, weighing the drops against
your bare shoulders was not my pleasure
you covered yourself up for fear of melting like sugar-cube in tea
and still you squeezed my heart with thunder

I followed you one book spine to another
and one reading after sunset
I got close enough to pinch your arm,
I needed to feel that you were less than a mirage
but you mistook that for a bee and summer's young love

What happens when I tell you what I'm truly after?
would you run if I told you I was the huntsman
who chased down the trail of your treads
by your shoe size in the snow
not for a heart or a kidney,
but for ears, soft enough to hear
a bed-time tale before it gets dark
on winter's early afternoons.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

In my weakness

I.
It is apparent, the breath you send after me
marked like morning dew, pearly like sweat
it comes off you without second thoughts
I can tell it is your only weapon, you are the first and the last man
standing
Weakness isn't your strongest feature, not one you'd admit to
don't hide it, it is sweet- you grow on me,
despite time weaving its claws into the folds of your face
I know you since birth
You will never admit you care for me,
You watch me, I feel it
the gaze that lands on my shoulders, yours unedited.

II.
I don't know if it is boredom or if it is your word
Be
your first, that becomes me
the human out of the details, add water
deduct salty tears, but raise enough space
for other body parts to grow like shrubs
save space for figures of speech
to line letters and create scenes that look
like the beginning, the middle and the end
of a long series of chapters, heading nowhere.

III.
Is that a bruise you ask?
is this a scar, tell me. You demand answers
to shapes I don't even notice myself
because I cannot look at my shoulder blades
when you can.

IV.
There's a voice in my head that repeats
what someone once told me:
I come from an ape, this ape was a fish
that was a cell at the bottom of the ocean
I might be fishy at times, but I am not hairy
nor senseless or am I?
cool me down like only you know, take off the masks I wear for my moments of weakness
cool me down, don't use spring water
use the sea
the tug of ebb and flow, the coarse salt and foam
For into me is all you know of life and a breath unhinged,
hanging by some thread cotton soft like the beard you developed
while you waited for me to mature, nine-months,
ninety-nine years to perfect
like pottery in the belly of a volcano
you wait, and I disappoint. I won't save you from losing the bits inside,
I won't tell you not to touch my apples
I will save you from counting more sheep and naming names for the animals
what's behind that voice that calls me an ape?

mistaken
he is
the one who says I am not born out of your left heart rib.

This poem was published first on Visual Verse. You can check it here: 
http://visualverse.org/submissions/weakness/

Saturday, November 8, 2014

the good fire

I'm here tonight, the sky colors itself
tiny pieces of light, like earrings
like my collection: various and versatile
vibrant with colors. Tonight, the chill in the air
burns my lungs but as I look up, the sky full of color
and sounds. I've seen this show a hundred times
as a child, on occasions. I lit a fire and watched it fill the sky
but tonight, far from my childhood
 a shudder runs into me as  I  remember
some children, who's last smile was the thought
of colorful skies at night
of fireworks. The same live show of fireworks that brought down their roof
things you like can haunt you, the books I read taught me
things you like can steal your breath, like fire at work-
I rest my head against the night sky tonight
careful in my goose skin-
in a parallel life, I almost was a child
who waited for the fireworks into the night
to explode.  

Friday, November 7, 2014

Travel by nighttime

part of a longer piece of work:

If we travel by nighttime,
we'll turn the page on day-light,
my swollen forehead will disappear
the shrapnel over your tongue will not cut you
perhaps it will stop the blood from trickling down your words

Thursday, November 6, 2014

and sleep again

There's not a lack of dream, when what you see is a screen of
pitch darkness.

there's significance in pauses, commas and interjections
and black screens in dreams are meant for a rest
from thought, from color and from shapes
deformed by waking.

There's no shame in dreams, no shame in reenacting and
wishful thinking, it's one big act
imagination never harmed its owner
the same way streams never sink God.

There are no excuses in dreams, there are no justifications
snakes talk and humans listen and doors lead to answers
and the edges of an exclamation mark.  There's no need to explain
to me your fantasy, there's no shame in dreaming

Dream then but keep the details
polish them the way you do sliver,
keep your dreams and give me your nightmares
I might brag about the shadows in your sleep-
keep the trail of thoughts because your dreams stop
when you allow others to fall into them
like reality. This is what keeps you thinking
I heard.

when departed

Moved with the wind, we departed

Teach a man how to fish, the proverb said
teach a woman how to sow a button, the old ladies said
everyone left their wisdom for us, before departure
young and vain, we needed to learn how to measure
the heat of water before we fished

I left first,
you objected and I held you back

You left
I objected, but you didn't hold me back

instead, we both wanted to learn to re-navigate the world
witlessly, wireless, like a blind child learning to read Braille
attached to the letter
but we wanted to fall into the traps of safety
 the mother of comfort, the black-widow of worry

I didn't need you to teach me how to fish
 you taught me other skills:
to watch for the season of wheat when it turned gold,
like my hair. You knew better, the fundamentals
You gave me wheat
not to starve, you said
plant wheat, you said
for the seven years of famine in my absence.


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Avoiding the stampede of wild horses

I.

Like dusk, it rises steady
the sound of hooves against the desert sky
glistening with leftover rain and clear starry night-I can see it
the sound of tapping, imminent
the wild horses are coming-
dressed in black cloth and turned-back whites
whiter than pearl and browner than burning hay
the horses are approaching
my pens

II.

on the bases of the river, the neighing rests
it drinks the blood of the desert, to run again
young, elixir washing over the horses
wild ones.
When I watch them I wonder
who inflicts the hooves in my language?
who ties the wilderness to my tongue?


III.

the burning sand carries the whiff of the jasmine,
the burning sand carries you when you step- fair maiden
careful like the mare, away from the herd- march
Sweep by the river, fair maiden
trail your dress' tail into the rush of the oasis
and be careful of the current, it might grip your hair
as you dangle for water, forgive the sirens
they shriek, their beauty you stole
and left them the power of song
how could they not grieve their loss?

IV.

the night wind blows again, but I find myself
a fair maiden, alone in bed
Who invited the horses into my slumber?
who told them to graze over the remaining bits of my brain?
I do not recall stepping out of the way for the hooves
who provides their wild insanity and for their hunger?
Why do the horses come into my head?

V.

When I asked you that day, if like me you read
the last pages of Black Beauty
you said you couldn't care less. It starts with my love of horses
and your silence, like a disconnected line
figure it is your right,
It is easier to avoid the mound of questions I heap onto you
the same way a Bedouin avoids the stampede of the desert's wild mares
and its untamed horses, unheard to inexperienced ears.
it rests untamed, the words you never spoke
sending the horses wild, behind my eyes.

received, not at birth

She was born with a name but received another
by the change of places and faces.

The childhood road she walked, adorned with trees
and paved with boys was all glistening with hunger.
the boys hunters of  flesh, like mosquito watched
her tidy knee-whites, ticking and cracking twigs of autumn
 she became Daddy long-legs, like a fly, swatted for a good night sleep
she proceeded downhill, the first name stuck to her like a tail.

she gained the second name by a love of chocolates
in the light years, ape-face became her reference
blotched red she knew her options were limited
she wouldn't be receiving roses that Valentine
and chocolate was strictly forbidden
she knew she couldn't change her face
but she could, like her name- wear another.

she became known to her friends as  princess,
because they thought she was now fair
she was bleached beyond repair, whiter than snow
bent into believing life, the same way a child
believed in fairy tales. What was offered, always a happy ending
because when you are not laughing you
are laughed at, it was a circle.

when he came into her life
he referred to her by degrees of cool
from zero to burnt
she hotter than  pizza, but felt cooler like ice
when he changed her name to a status
she bit her red hot lip.

with her name changing so much she, called herself no one
because she believed she was
 the words they said, the names she wasn't born with.

Monday, November 3, 2014

The question

What does one do with things that do not decompose
like longing that comes in the shape of a frequently used
smell?. Irrational, these thoughts.
What doesn't die out stays for lack of purpose, or place
like a whiff of almonds and roses, perhaps it knocks on one's door in winter
to remind,at least me-of the glory that passes on cat feet.
Maybe the secret lies in bitterness' tang  at newness
newness demands a look at the raw core of  elements:
new children with pink flesh,
unopened books and the wave of an old tune's flag.
It is possible to hide what doesn't lean itself to decay
display is the word then, like antique shops and museums
cram them with decay to preserve
memories that shouldn't, horrid nature that belongs
to kingdoms non-human.

but the real question remains: what does one do with the fight against decomposition?
let the fire then
be the answer.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Looking in the mirror

I urged her at birth
to stop looking in the mirror at how God made her
I told her, it is nearly impossible to detect the flaws
because He creates no imperfections
and she believed me, trotting in her pink dress.

I still urged her at teenage
to stop hating the mirror
as she was whole. true, she was sewed with tears, that she knew at birth
but she was  infused with a universe inside of her
and still she broke, little by little
on the missing bits of her
she broke with the bits extending out of her
and she blamed the eyes
and she blamed the mirrors.

I told her when she started university
that she can be anyone she wanted
that things were always in her hand
even if she could not see them with her naked eyes
even if her soul was naked when her body was layered
I told her she can be anyone and she became
everyone she met.

 These days I know her by the walk
by how others look to her in awe
all because she stopped looking in the mirrors
and started looking elsewhere
for beauty.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Hallows

Pumpkins carved, like child teeth
costumes hang around closets
bats, candy and skeletons, wizards and leaves and violins
damn the violins, that's all you hear
but death is optional
sometimes its necessary to just be
in character

image copyright: google search. 

Sharps,Flats, Neutrals

The notes come like bricks
make them slowly
piece by piece put them together
it is the series of sharps and flats
you hear

there are a few solitary creatures
unpicked and left behind like rotting leaves
on the pavements of autumn
these are the flats
you hear when you focus

and then disasters come together
in duos, like rain and earthquakes
like smoke and fire
like the flower dangling form the gun's nape
these are the sharps
you could possibly hear amid the noise

there are still those, like daily bread
risers for work
feeders of chocolate,
some who worry about the birds getting wet
and the sky turning into earth for a prayer
those are neutrals
sitting on the margins
of music.

Bright eyes

The sun, she knows hurts her
like the edge of sharp mirrors cutting into her hands
too much of one thing
spoils the rest
too much light
spoils color.

she knows his eyes hurt her
the way a thistle pricks
an unsuspecting child
intense and soft
too much of his eyes
spoil her stomach.

she knows that the end
lines to places, distant or near
would hurt her, like death
like dreading the daylight

she knows it all because
only bright eyes, like his, like hers
contemplate darkness

Pastpresent

the distance between tomorrow and yesterday
is essentially the same
divide it by four, multiply it by insignificant details
lack of attention to the change of the clouds
or the departed when they depart
the reminisce begins when the seconds pass
the distance between tomorrow and yesterday is essentially the same
it's the purity in each second that makes
the bigger separation

Monday, October 27, 2014

On a separation wall

The graffiti left behind, baring names of people
questions, without their punctual marks.

(Inspired by Ezra Pound, clearly)

Cemented

Something crackles inside
it is loud, like race-bikes on a dirt road
I can smell the burning of tires and the lifting of stones
as I move my shoulders
Something started crackling inside of me
and for a reason I cannot figure
when? where or how?
Something barks inside of me
like a homeless dog, like an injured child
it seeks me when I least expect it
demanding my full attention
Something crackles on the left side of my body
ah! must be the heart surgeon,
last month, he ripped out my heart
and cemented its place with bricks.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

How to split a body into two

                    I. 

It is one thing to handle what comes your way 
it is another to handle your snores, 
loud and vulgar like the laughter of a midnight dancer
deprived of sleep 
I lie, contemplating the night as your chest rises and your head falls 
into visions I can no longer access,
 places I'm no longer interested to explore 
I know your body by the inch, you know my brain by the corner
we are even

                          II. 

Half open, you leave each morning
the toothpaste cap, now in front of me
mine or yours?  We stopped asking a long time ago
when questioning ends, you blend like color in paint
you make a new color, your own 

                         III. 

Try a drop of oil, I suggest to you
you can rub the oil on your shoulders where it hurts 
You tell me you've been carrying boxes, weights 
I say I can relieve you from the ocean that's on your back
but you turn your head toward the bedroom door
and I stay with the television, talking senseless 
reporting a world, miles away closer yet than 
the stairway to our bed.

                      VI. 

Tonight is another dark room
the curtains are fully closed
it is awfully quiet here, under the clean linen
smelling of fresh roses
there's no snoring tonight
but I cannot fall asleep.

the cut

there's an incision bellow my navel
it is fresh as milk, burning like an old birthmark
patched, I cannot move
the scar is tender but this time it isn't our doing

Shepherd's night

Ewes, don't hold your milk- for you are safe
no fangs shall harm you whilst I am
awake to watch and hear the hiss of footsteps in the grass
dawn on dusk, no damnation to haunt you.

I will call for the third time again
maybe like Peter I will hear an answer, maybe not
it is a form of betrayal: denial that munches harsh
but I will never sleep with its guilt

Sleep safe goats, sleep with thick wool, sheep
for the chambers of soft sleep are painless
to the jab of fangs and the noise of panic
sleep sound, sleep safe

Be safe, fear no fangs but the one who calls them
 by fault, or by trial
for I am the only fool, the sick shepherd,
who calls onto the wolf, every night to his herd
I drown the sheep in nightmares
and keep the brown-eyed village girl on the run.

Be

I
was the culmination of years in making
like sculpting, now
I
am the transformation of desire
taking shape from the earth's nape
to navel to nape again
red like burning coals and blue like thunder
prancing, throbbing,
light as a sigh, I am exhaled from dirt that shaped me
I am
and I know we shared this a long time ago
the thinking of where we were and how we became to be
flesh and bones out of sticks and broken stones
Adam's first breath and Eve's first pang of guilt
you share these too, aware or not-
we are the sky's wingless birds
the ocean's deepest pit
I as you have been infused with the spirit to be-
be every possibility
be the answer to questions I didn't dare ask
I told you I am infused by the spirit of wild horses and the return of the swallows
to warmer weathers. I, as you have been made at the earth's navel
yet we have always longed for the skies, searching
the question of the word be, the letter and its calligraphy
how  curvaceous it rolls, we push it second.
I
was infused by a spirit
 who places B as the second in the alphabet
but the first of God's words
before time.
because let there be, he said
and it was

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Where do the lonely bury their weariness?

In blues, in jazz the lonely discard
bits and pieces of their weariness
they carry, printed against their skin beneath their eyes
black pouches full of sleepless nights,
thinking and
weariness, plain and raw.

(part of a longer poem still in work)

Feed the world

Funny, how much you can do with so little
shiny coins and fold-able paper
feed the world
all it eats is money

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

under the mercy

There's more than will to make you
stand on your feet, under the rain waiting
for a revelation or a leap of faith, calculating
the leaves that fall within seconds of you standing
while you still can
there are people like this, like rocks, like statues
who have the will to remain standing
in the face of the hurricane, under the mercy of the sun.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Rock-Paper-Scissors

At times
you cut me, to my depth and shred me to pieces
 like a raw rigid paper
this always happens before I crush you, smash the metal rims where
I usually hold you, where you fit perfectly in the spaces of my fingers
then I blend you, carefully like cake-
push me and  I will
fall over you. I, who was once your rock. 

Friday, October 17, 2014

chain of tests

everything burns down, save for titanium
titanium stands the wrath of hell
it passes the test, the same test Eve failed successfully with a simple apple
a ring of plated titanium, a diamond sparkle for her, that's her test now
a word and her, that's his test, the ultimate
forever the hardest to pass.

lightweight

Three drams of whiskey down and the north bridge starts to lead south
three drams again and not only would the trams move, but also the city
Edinburgh and its lit streets and monuments, of old, historic value or of newly weaved cashmere scarves
soft, tender is the shape of the clouds as they walk overhead in tune
to a wailing bagpipe and the hustle of a sharp northern wind-
a wind that resembles ice, yet softly nudges music into the ears of the passerby
awake, wrapped in a coat, or half there and half elsewhere
his core at least isn't present
and he could only blame it on the powerful Scottish.

Thursday, October 16, 2014

murderers by stone

The red dove that lives two rows up my windowpane goes down
she collapses.The same lotus that once sang 
a break without patience
is now the break of the patience I had
with the training of my neighborhood boys
murderers by stone in place of nobel archery

I spy

I spy with my little eye
roundness, a fish's view of the lane next to my house
it looks to me like a circle, unending
the trees, the sweet shop with its swirl of sticky gums
at the end of the cardboard made telescope, colors and shapes I spy.

Today I spy with my little eye
three children awake at the hour of travel,
their parents in deep slumber,
deep yet gentle like grass in spring
I spy children spying with an eye, the world bigger than it normally is.

I spy with my little eye, a mother, like mine
reading to her child a bedtime story at noon-
to calm down his fear of the clouds, of monsters under his jacket -turned-blanket
and I spy a dent in my head, now alone I am like a motherless child.

and when I turn to my window, without a telescope I spy
the scenery: a river that runs beneath my feet, helping me day-dream
in full color of mountains and sites I haven't yet spied-
yet what bothers me is, how long it's been since I last
glared and spied at the core of the world
the same way I did when I spied with my make-up free eye.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Fortune Cookie

The shell is open
crumbs here and there over the shiny brown table
the paper wedges itself between the index and the thumb
he feels for it again
'falling in love is easy' says the first half of the fortune cookie
'it is like fal'.... the second half is undone
falling into an incomplete hole, torn out by fortune on a Sunday morning
the cookie tumbles and tins in the bin
falling hurts anyway
as do unprepared, unsolicited cookies on a quiet Sunday morning.

Googled a fortune cookie for your Wednesday night (picture not mine, obviously).

B&W

Some say black is the collection of everything colorful
I say leave black to decide which side of the spectrum it falls into

Some go and separate gradation, pigments of  color like they do their vegetables at lunch
the darker the shade, the further away from their precious food
the darker the shade, the lighter is conversation
the darker the shade, the slow-stewing of shame

Some say that days should be lived by the hues at the clouds' belly, grey and white
like soft unborn children. I say one should live by the sun's reflections on every living creature.

Some say the world is better in monochrome
 I stand to wonder what would you learn from a sieve that only broadcasts a roll of movies, plain aimless faces?.

yet some moan that there is not enough in monochrome to stretch and widen like an artist drawing a field of  poppies
the blacker the filter is, the harder it becomes to see,
have they ever felt a night to its core, a beauty in absence?

yet most work around light, because it emits
the energy they are not willing to share
but most forget that light, in its bright whiteness is the negation of other colors.

Monday, October 13, 2014

A single word

I am grateful, the words stops in midair
unable to continue the remaining parts of the grace-
her graces spill out like beads, 
times like these, when the wind fills the holes in her lungs
and heat drains at the end of a long hour- her mind wonders
what would experience feel like
if she could tell
the whole world a tale in a single word?.

in his head

wet lemon snores, dry
he's long given up on sleeping in Jul, the sizzler
shifts through the layers of the night
small hours, rough ends- yet
she, the passenger on the left side of his bed bleats kindly,
 her weary head tender, his
 rueful- crying youth between snores.

moving

There is no shame in movement
forwards or backward. Shame is in halts
that's how we have been programmed, robots with brains
receive shame when you quit moving and hold your legs up.
There is no shame in laying and letting
the bigger picture slide, maybe even breaking away from the frame
framing is not a daily necessity, it is not like food and water.
There's no shame between us
but we make enough stress on voids of movements
we generate what we would want least-
a pause in the sentence, a comma, an interjection
to subdue with what we have we say
Keep moving, keep rolling - but mottoes sound the same
every cliche has been hammered the exact way its sister does
it is easier to say than to push the wheel of days
keep moving, never stop or bend to the ground
because life may flatten you raw
keep moving
there's shame in void
keep moving not onward, away
away from it.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

In her kitchen

   flour mounts... white
eggs tumbling... proudly made a crack
not her heart this time
but a way to make
fat, low& kind

Window pane

The window pane is darker than brown
lighter than ash but the stare escapes her
and lands on the softly mowed lawn
she passes the garden every night on her way to the patch she calls her own
now from the window she sees the frost laying its blanket for the night
five flowers fragrantly fill the room with the smell of a promise
and warmth, nothing like roses to put the mind into
wandering, old romantics like poems and ancient poets
 technicalities needed to build up an illusion out of missing
that the things that are available will be for a while
that the faces like stamps make a print, with wet ink
that the truth can be folded like a pretty napkin and stowed away till further use
she dusts the picture on the windowpane, another reminder of the hand behind the roses
all before she stares again into space out of the diamond-shaped windowpane
she will gaze

lover who are you thinking of
under the blanket of sky and furry diamonds
who glues up your pieces
tonight?

Consider this

Consider this-
there's some stillness, ever present in the loudest of noise
an instant where calm creeps in like a cat tiptoeing on a fence
out of the blue, it rushes over and heeds for control

Consider this-
the answer you seek will arrive
in various shapes and forms, in the mail, in a dream
only when you stop chasing it, only when you stop knocking the wind out of its lungs

Consider this-
distill the leftovers from yesterday's dream and the day before
and the previous day too, the past belongs to a time that's left
for a purpose, its own

Consider this-
the me/s, the yous,
the us
a start to possibilities

now consider this-
a landslide, a warning, the answer
to stillness

Thursday, October 9, 2014

product of rush

I am a product of rush
I have been made for the extras: the last beats of music before closure
the notes of furious fathomless masters
makers of destiny and design
I have been made out of the dents
left on cars before the crash-
measuring the swell of possibilities
I am the hiss the river makes right before it breaks
a thousand pieces of a waterfall
because even in its weaker moments
the river has the soul of speedy, it is made to compete with fish
I am meant to be a product of rush because even when I walk slowly
there's a race between my ears.

Land and Sea

 I.
 I take an arm's length to answer you.
You ask why there's a pause, like a solemn prayer wedged beneath us-
you insist to know before I join your lips in holy prolonging
or you join mine in holy speech. Briefly we meet, at the rise of the day
at its closing, like meetings would bewitch us. Briefly we touch, a peg of shyness here
a splash of distance there and minutes buoying without prior alarm
it catches me off guard, even though you've done it well before- questioning
I hesitate to let you know my secret,
my scales are adjusted to salty environments and the gills are used to severe oxygenation.
You will never know.

II.
I ask about your three new scars, the ones you tuck safely under a smoking shirt
of red and black. I can read your scars, the sore parts of your skin the same way you read
the newspaper, skimming for surprise at the headlines.
It is true you've damaged half your arm and half your brain on the way to meet me
You've lost flights in timber and I've lost patience-we have both made enough
 sacrifices to last us a lifetime, now before you drop another coral into my waters
tell me really, how have you been?.

III.
Hover high ahead, be careful where you land I tell you
there's enough danger if you rock me three times, sideways
before we break like a wave and hurry for another day
we'll save the snippets -the mundane, the daily-for next meeting
I am sure we would meet when the two poles salute
or when the equator trades places with the ozone
and you tell me not to tear, tears are made up of salty waters you say
what difference would they make to the ocean?


IV.
Now do you still ask about pauses in our speech
after all of my desperation to fix one sentence for our egos?
let's string a few words to satisfy flight times and nose dives
only question marks pop in my head each time I try to answer your questions.
Questions breed more questions like rabbits, unable to stop
so low, let us not venture into the forbidden territories.
Yet before you flap your wings, before I rub my scales against the coral
know this is why we are like a traffic light on orange
I love too much the ocean, my local, my coral and you
too much your cloudless sky.



Artwork credit: Sea Land and Sky by Jeff Montogomery, courtesy of Google search. more on the artist here:http://fineartamerica.com/featured/sea-land-and-sky-jeff-montgomery.html

Sunday, October 5, 2014

Thermal Waters with a Roman God

Half past two, the autumn showers
drop as if someone unzipped the clouds
to pour. The goddess is careless to the change of the hour
she descends into the thermal waters,
plaid patterned swimsuit,
volcanic breath from the earth's sigh
the water ripples as she touches the surface
her hair fraying.

Three on the main clock in town
and autumn is still showering down
her thoughts drown, she loses gravity
she falls forwards, like a drop
he catches her.

Three ten, the Roman god flexes his muscles
lifting his arms towards her
she notices an old battered olive tree behind his shoulder
squeezed in its enormity into a small pot of clay
she marks the freckles under his hazel eyes
 it reminds her of a place she once called home
the water ripples.

Three twenty five, he's talked to her about the
great Roman empire, as if she never knew what it meant
of flat, rocky steps, and arches and education
of art and mighty men and wars fought for women like her
like her he says. As he moves towards her
she sucks the heat of the water, dreams of his lips.

Three thirty,
the water is boiling, all she sees is fog
frayed up hair, Roman chins and Roman glory
oh, all the great cities
the sounds, the heat, the fury
gnaws, escalates, grunts,
the water ripples.
.

the tortoise story

arthritic tortoise
rims the edges of the pond,
extinguishes thirst between the leaves, scavenger
accelerates for greenery, dims, bows
to move again.

things I tag you with

bottomless
weak, we hold our hands for thunder
no rain drops over the frail lines of our palms
it's gone, the storm has passed
               invisible
is what we speak of yet keep inside
walling it by roses, dividing it by thorns
 we say we are both too bold
moving islands away
yet we cringe at rainwater on our necks
                   straightforward
we walk the steps of others, not looking behind
not once-
I peer at your face, it glows like a new found coin
glows anew with the past
            Unforgivable
the melancholic tunes you sing
in my dreams, every night
tell me how can you chant my heart out
when you cannot even hear it beat?

filling the rooms

In hushed whisper we enter to speak 
in the house of low ceilings and high decorative arches 
and paint and half finished, half red kitchens
we enter to speak again
the air hangs, neither summer nor winter. It is pulled by the hair 
sticking at the roots like worn-out dye- fading never a single color
 the dog lies on its bed, its head turned to face the excitement of the windows, 
he is what remains of his owner, black fur here and there 
tools, a few shoes, movies and dancing paintings and pictures:
below the ceiling and above the sofa, a canvas
a young couple burying their faces into one another, eyes shut
lips apart. The owner, the dancer, the teacher, the indentation between
two feet on a flat wooden floor has been gone a while
gone to harvest, harvested going
 We enter to speak again, we whisper asking about time 
that flies stealing half the pictures, white-washing the last trays of song and stars
where does it all go? where do we all go?
do we all harvest?
we enter to speak again of the feral cats that left to harvest
the last mice of autumn, left with their owner
feral for life.
All is gone and done in a whim, the last pieces of summer
the owner's shadow, the coal in the grill and day light
but in the small house we enter to speak again of the things that leave
I look at the walls
it is true that at first it struck me,  the big canvas frame of a young couple in love,
their kiss for all eternity, saving itself like speech, like vows
like the big canvas frame, the tiny fireplace and the cushions
parts of a whole, that's only a part now-
the dog is out too, he is chasing daddy long legs in the grass
all in the back garden
I turn to enter the house of low ceilings and high arches 
when  it strikes again
the smell of one person, the memory of a human
filling the rooms. 

Tasting alcohol

the taste of loneliness is like alcohol
sweet is the first cup, tangy
like lemon blossoms and long summer nights
but sharp is the taste of loneliness on one's buds
like crunching chilly pepper in hope for
sugar. Like alcohol loneliness wanders
too heavy to leave
too happy to stay
like alcohol, unremembered.

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Adonis' songbird

Adonis is ill tonight, bleak is this music
devoid of any meaning, it is the songbird's fault
the songbird cuts her vocal cords
one by one, two for the lumps that grow on throats like cankers on trees
the third for the leftovers of her voice
she hangs them over Adonis' head, like washing  to ward off the evil eye
far from his hay-and- flower ornamented bed, she tries to restrains
the pairs that give him their blueness and gradation of yellow
Adonis is ill tonight and she pleads with her body;
pleading cranberries, pleading the river, pleading the tunes she sings
for a calmer woodland and a softer moon. Adonis may sleep well away from the wild boars.
 Her Adonis is ill for the night and she can only squeeze his hand 
and dance around the fire they light, together at many instances
Adonis is terribly ill for the night and she's already given him her voice
because she had nothing better to offer, nothing more precious to the
bright-feathered, bedside tethered songbird.


Picture credits: Peter Paul Rubens c.o. Google Art collection.