Saturday, May 31, 2014


Failure, he says
is an attribute of the strong --
like builders who fail to fit into
the maths and the grading
like women who rush for marriage
or children while still on a life half lived
like burying ones head into sand
for safety against the clamor
Failure is good for the muscles
it tones the fats down
Failure is good because
 it flattens the hearts
I tell you of my failings
So you can know of your callings

Friday, May 30, 2014

Poetry written once in illness

I’m hallucinating in poetic verse
I’m cracking my way between images,
Lost between ivy and wonderlands
Metaphors are running in front of my eyes, senseless chicken
The blisters on my tongue made love to fever,
Then, you  launched your presences– one by one, ghosts or visions
 Once more, my muse
Stop these lucid hallucinations of color and of poetry
Dig deeper into their origin:
It is there buried under what feels like bricks
Graceful, a bit tired but thankful
Scared, anxious and bustling
No definitely  scared
Scared of withering away  alone here in this cold foreignness
Like Al Sayyab, he was a poet, wasn’t he?
Petrified at the thought:
Of leaving without showing enough how grateful and loving it can be

That little heart in me. 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Namings, callings

We bare our names the way we bare our faces
They become a feature
summarizing our beings in a few syllables
Some are named by their mother's desires
those that grew in umbilical cords
but were bigger than birthmarks like
like Claire to clarity,
and Esperanza to hope
Our names carry us on solid wagons, in time
and in nature; aurora and peach
Lilly, morning song and Gaias,
Ash to earth, earth to earth.
A few of us carry lordship and sainthood,
only in names and old prayer books
breaking off in miniature studded rosaries
like John/s, Michael/s and Christina/s
do they live up to angelic chants?
sometimes Jane/s, Alice/s, Emma/s and Fitzwilliam/s
fit better in novels and auto generators of fiction
known to millions, the names hide from their owners
in an unending childhood games of guesses.
In times when mothers are wrecked
from sweat beads, pain and long cries
the syllables come in halves:
Ra, Jo and Cal
Abe, Gil and Flo
Flow of thoughtless moments
but names are unique callings
for they are sharper than a few letters
they sink in meaning beyond limit
Take mine, a calling special
short and easy to say
I was named for a pious grandmother
Graceful, wise and simple
She prays
while I sit poised between empty bottles of Gin
and long nights of sin.

Times New Roman

Twelve, times new roman
is not just a font,
words created the seas
 between two inescapably narrow shores
too shallow and too sore to become one land again
and within them sprouted algae and fragile sea turtles
The words hugged one another, 
in time these will vanish
but now they were new;
freshly cut they puked the story 
like little, lame pebbles
lined up against an old Roman olive tree
Was it worth the tsunami, then?
Is it worth the rumble between 
the two sides of the same coin
flipping madly in the head
flipping for
a single line, double stressed thought. 

Monday, May 26, 2014

Flower arrangements

'Bless my homeland forever.' Edelweiss, Sound of Music.


From the crag, edging near the cliff
the Edelweiss flutters in the snowy wind
Tiny and white, bathed in yellow it looks over the houses
some houses are built from wood
some still standing in sticks and stones
the crisp of the fire burns bellow her
The Edelweiss smiles at those who greet her,
still standing.


Between the red chipping soil darts the poppy
It is bursting in color like spring
touching the ground and greeting the swallows
The poppy looks at the swaying bodies as they
fall, one after the other into the her arms
welcome, my children, the poppy says to
Those who listen with mud clamped ears.


The 'blossom of snow' looks over
the children across the mountains
The poppy receives her own bodies from the groves
Both flowers, pregnant with seasons glance
and stand guarding,
 blessing and overlooking homelands, forever.

Pictures courtesy of Google search. 

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Bus stop

In the bus station Two guys argue With gangster volume and shabby clothes Thier voices echo bouncing off empty blue seats Around seven o'clock In the gloomy bus station
before their sound disappears
and the cigarette buds remain

Priority seat

Seat the adults The handicap Those whose bones eroded 
and those whose bones are being made Those women Seat the wombs
The long standing feat
they deserve the Propority seat 
Seat them then; Our fears 
of clothing new souls and burying old ones
Our fears of fading 
like ash into the wind 
Seat it, let it hush Our fear of halving, of breakage 
seat it down, the fear 
of breaking chapping bones and dignities
Seat our fear of being or becoming a new Seat the fear of rebirth Birthing little souls that sprout like fungi to raid or raise Priority seat the missing The wrinkles The pained All the normals can handle the bites of boots The smell of armpits Shaking earthquakes 
on long rides Just seat the fear Our comfort can remain standing.

Write loss

You cannot touch loss by hand
Like you touch a new baby or a silk piece of cloth 
Because loss runs from you
or you from it, like a never ending series of tomorrows.

You cannot see loss, 
The way you see sunshine bursting in rainbows
every morning
because your eye will twitch 
Thrice before it lets your lids onto the scenes before you.

You cannot hear loss, 
Like Beethoven to his senses
because it is mute and deaf to the sighs
of misery and the revocations of hushed whispering
that replaces the sighs. 

Loss cannot creep up to your nose
and pinch you, like a stench of a burnt out camp
or a bloody limb dripping
blood, wasting bodily iron that festers instead of water
at the roots of a blossoming jasmine.

You cannot taste the bitter orange meringue 
ruffed in white cream that loss bakes
every morning as it embraces
the tiny footsteps of who and what should have been 
standing in the mirror next to you
in place of loss. 

You do touch loss, around your ears or in the spaces of your fingers
where the ring once sat, crowned in jewels and smothered in kisses
You can see loss, wherever you turn if you look carefully
and you can hear it, beating then beeping around hospital monitors
and loss stinks and reeks, out of you on a bed after labor
after falls, and accidents and misspellings on test papers--
Loss creeps into your cracks like rivers of yellow custard 
flowing at the end of a hungry stomach.
Loss shapes you as you mold it along-
Believe me, I've tried to befriend it
but it slid beneath me, fooled my pens
even when I changed the ink's colors
For you
You cannot scribble loss
unless it hits you first in the gut
and then in the brain, 
like a speedy final destination train. 

Saturday, May 24, 2014


'There's heat in freezing, be a testament' Tanya Davis

White, beautiful and causally teary,
the head, it is a flame against the minutes
the heart is a flame against darkness
the flame, hot and steady
burns to light other people's way
but people tend to forget
A candle burns, after all.

Picture not mine, found on Google.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Steps above the River

Over my water. There's a wobbly bridge
Over the water, underneath me
There's a wobbly note
That plays
From the cracks underneath me
A gull flies
and a ferry blows its boats, hard and sharp
All beneath me
I am as cross
As the smoggy waters. The waters, the face of the city
are rushed, angry and washed over
And on the wobbly bridge I count my steps:
For the mad woman of poetry
For the homeless man in the red cape, hugging a dog for warmth
For the acrylic brush that painted my desires: rain, warmth and an orange horizon
For undiscovered nooks: stations, corners, bread and ice-cream
For pieces of a grand puzzle:: me, you, we, they, us
For the carbon copy faces: crisp, tired and full of tide
For the other side of everything.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The London Look

How do you describe the untangled, unattainable  
a mixture of color,
Add eyes
subtract noses 
and multiply cheeks
That's the image, that's the make up
Of her reflection  
Rimmel she wears, like shades of 
London cast lipstick glows blood red 
while she glances at the window
And London with its Rimmel rushes
and they are both water and tear proof.

Fire brigade

Two a.m.
The alarm bells are deafening,
Like big continuous cars tamping
upon each other.
The night is not young,
the sticks hold us up
like matchboxes in a row
we are not young
but among the ramp of bodies
a hair lone, black like the night
flails, and pulls the layer of silk
under the cover of the stars
'It was just a burnt out toast bread', the white face explains
The fire brigade handles no jam
and while the world burns
We recline on our sticks
we watch as they all run to save
the building from the dark.

Past midnight convo

Me, what do I do at this hour?
Nothing, I am making a different world.
Aren't you done yet?
No. The world still needs active people
But it is late- past the hours of the night sky to turn 
Aqua and charcoal. 
The world still needs people, I say
Like feathers moving up and down
Living,  dying, becoming
What coming?
I said becoming, as in wearing a shade.
Is my pronunciation thick?
Not at all!. You are European, no?
No. I come from the south,
south of the freezing sea.
How about you? Big fella with muscular arms
and pressed white shirt.
Want to call me, pretty boy?
Me, no I'm a bit shy.
Those blue eyes I've seen these, somewhere-
Sorry I didn't catch your name,
Maybe you are a ghost in my head-
A reflection of blue eyes I know 
No. he answers, you didn't get it
My name
because I am a man of mysteries
Like Zorro but I am not Mexican
I don't have a thick accent I am-
Denis, I am from Romania. 
I am made from 40 degrees bellow the ice
Nice to meet you,little Lotte, in the apple shine dress
and the daisies of wonderlands.  He says, Denis the Romanian 

Friday, May 16, 2014

The godly pair


It rises like no tomorrow
Like no shadow draped its mantel
over the lake towards
where the waters rumble
The stench of little, unexplored
bodies of air and water
and little dots of incomprehensible white
Like snowflakes,
like daises exposed from green earth.
He brags the tails of his crimson mantel
three times near brink of the water
No allowed to glance
The glossy surface dances with the wind
Three times his shadow passes
and from a nearby tree the thrust of grass
grumbles and its Echo he hears
All along, repeating
Willow and wallow,
Kissing the thrush's song and the swallow
It's  Echos he hears,again all along
It's Echo he hears but light he follows
'Come towards the shallow water'
He stoops near the river and
God- that is a beautiful lad
broad shouldered, browned eyes
and let's not talk about the cheek bones
or the light brow
A painting divine, too real
For the mind to just glance at
Let's not wash it away from water
But the wind blows again; rippling wrinkles upon that cheek
that image is mine, he stoops lower
and his eyes roll stones under the waves
He is the eternal wrinkle at the lake's stomach.


She smells the sulfur of the sea
its livers' bile
As she navigates her way
In the cactus paved deserts
That grew on her heart
Where are you? she cries.
Where have you gone?
G o o o o n e..
The wind breaks her pleas.
Answer me,  the sun blisters her feet
She trails and the devils dance along
'Come gently, like wind to water'
She moves to where no sand can claim her heart
She move where no sand can tint her hands
Near the brinks, between the grass
By the grey and green waters
She glances
'Where are you?'
Three faeries and three fireflies
Flutter their wings around her white lined dress
'Ah' runs her gasp, out, steady and swift
She almost missed it;
His cheek, his shoulder bones were
 yellow and white crowned flowers
laying near her sun kissed  toes.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Rotten Fruit

When one picks apples
They proceed gently
holding the young saplings:
Buds and blooms
they explode into 
the multitude of red sparkle.
You, beat three times around the bush
Never beat the bush
Be careful with apples,
They are tender.
What about the other fruit?

Shoot it    he said
cut to its core, 
Turn and watch it fall to the ground
Bleeding sap on cements or festering rot
This is what happens to everything
that's not red or round
it is opened
Split in two
and left in the sun till it becomes red
or dyes black
 Like it never  existed.


What they say

Few lines from a poem under construction:

Your name
Watch where you carve it
Keep an eye to where your foot steps
That's what mothers usually say
Before they wrap their warmth
and tuck it neatly
Next to the apples and the oranges
in morning prepared lunchboxes.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

A case of missing

Whenever you miss something,
a smell, a rose, a sound of laughter
a face, a being, your own self
just walk, walk away from your longing --
toward newer places: patches of green,
dogs behind the tress with tinted collars
to where jazz music plays
operated by an old, ragged street performer.
And I
I have walked, all the paths
You will be amazed at the greenery I've seen,
And at the dogs I've managed to piss off
but the screeches of the jazz octaves  I've hit
Still play
Till the dawn of meetings.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Marginal notes of a madwoman

In describing what goes around her the madwoman turned to dust
Over the ridges her bellowing rose:

The world I rely on is tipping over
it is
Tipping over

sliding into deep, dark inked water. 

Sunday, May 11, 2014


A license to harm,
A license to hunt, not haunt
requires: a cavity in the brain
and an old, plastic knife. 

Saturday, May 10, 2014


They dreamed of one day 
when adjectives
stop hanging from each person's back
 like an unwanted declaration 
They dreamed of a day 
when nouns 
stop appearing on each person's face 
Like pimples
They dreamed of a day 
when words stop making scars 
like a case of testimonial on days to come
They believed in the world of the dream
too much to ever wake up. 

The Morning After

In Mid conversation we lived
Haunted, flared
Stacked in a moment of time.
You walked out, like a release
From a long, repetitive survey
She played the song
Maria,Maria left her fruits on the table
and I
I unplugged the speakers
I ran away with the cable
The apples have gone rotten
The music had faded like rewashed linen

Now I turn in speech alone

You. Where have you gone?

Thursday, May 8, 2014


For R....

 I cannot sit down
Because I'd explode
 I'd run  wild flowers
I cannot sit down
The rain is all over me
For it rained all evening.
Even my words shake as they leave me
Towards silence
I never knew your favorite flower
Or the way you liked your pizza
but I never knew or had the strength
to text your other half:
Sorry for your loss

because halfway there's a sorrow for mine.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Starry conversation

The sun told the moon
'I miss you'
He answered
'come visit me when it's nighttime.
Meet me in the dark'


The cat swallowed 
Half the moon the boy threw out of the window
and gave the beams to her staving kittens.


The half moon played half a song
the half moon talked to half the stars
The other halves 
Beamed jazz in the kitties tummies. 

The full moon rounded,
Like peacocks it cried 
'night's here'

The sun snorted at nighttime, 
it hated the sound of rustling wind 
Meowing cats and angry teenage boys.
The sun despised the cracks of whips 
and the breaking of vases and jars. 


Then when the moon said I want you 
the sun answered: 
You are plain rock 
noisy and hard
And I am bright fire
my surname is the morning star. 

illustration credit: found on a yoga website via google, not mine. 

Little arguments

What are you saying?
What are you doing?
Why is your sky green and mine blue?
Your seas are purple and your land is drawn in musical notes
Your speech is whimsical and you dream in metaphor
Sometimes, we do not get you
Your gibberish
the world you create for yourself,
'Why? Show me one reason why.' He asked again
Art explains itself, she whispered as
She pulled him by the hand
away from the paint dripping canvas
left to dry
under May's sun.

Monday, May 5, 2014

On loss

Center of the world,                                 
tell me
when does the next train leave
off the edges of the universe?. 

(part of a poem inspired by Frida Khalo's painting bellow) 

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Future Fear

No one enjoys
The ride along this but I,
Fear this dream
Flowers! waste again.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Rooster's egg.

Ours they had said Of the roosters egg No, it is ours- their neighbors cried And they both forgot It was never a rooster that laid the egg!

Friday, May 2, 2014

Cycling and poetry

The cyclist he
never sees
eye to eye those who tread
the land at their pace.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Bee yourself

is not the exposition of hair breaking 
or scars and mistaking 
Not the effects of leftover alcohol in your soul 
or even your turned out closet.
One is 
What makes of those moments, 
all put together
of breaking hairs and of mornings beyond alcohol 
Spirits are never made to be worn out
One becomes what one puts up 
or lets go off, like decorations
one is collected in attics through the years
and one is vibrantly polished like glass surfaces-
One never stops growing, 
old, but somehow taller, or heavier 
Truthful but somehow leaner 
One's self stretches its wings enough
to fit the world 
yet awes at where other selves start.