Hiraeth

Standard

“Kya gham hai jisko chhupa rahe ho,
tum itna jo muskura rahe ho?”

the sadness in your eyes is borrowed.

every story you tell is borrowed.

every time i laugh it hurts my chest;

i realise my laughter is borrowed.

sixty pence for a lifetime of giggles,

i say no, thank you, it’s a wonderful bargain

but i prefer the pain.

heartbreak is like a toothache.

it hurts when i bite into someone else’s lips.

the sound of my fingers tapping on hardwood floor,

i borrowed from a fairytale about a princess

trapped in a magical tower.

my foolishness, my unrelenting desire

to escape from nothing but everything,

my courage, i assume, is borrowed too.

my lips trailing the outline of your collar

leave behind a memory that is borrowed,

the time i froze between a sigh and a kiss,

borrowed.

if only i could borrow

the smell of your hair,

the warmth of your arms,

the ghosts of your destruction,

the debris of your soul.

Advertisements

A numbered poem for lonely people, again.

Standard

1. Rumi said closed fists and outstretched palms were both signs of paralysis. I stare at my hands disappointedly. Is there where I start to die?

2. My love has always been a few syllables short of being your favourite poem. I’ve decided to stop writing altogether.

3. Ponds without ripples make me uncomfortable. I can only stand to see distorted reflections. The sky looks like it’s dancing.

4. Do artists feel less lonely when we applaud their sadness?

5. My friend’s brother killed himself without leaving behind a note. His family looks weighed down by apologies, none to give but one to receive.

تعكساك هزيمتك .6
your eyes mirror your defeat.

7. If you iron out human skin into a sheet, it’s enough to keep one person warm. I don’t think I am that person.

8. I will always be scared of crossing roads.

9. The first thing you will forget about me is my smile.

10. What if the shore is tired of the sea?

A numbered poem for lonely people.

Standard

1. Force yourself to wake up wanting to miss someone but wait till the memories rush past you like a bullet train, till you’re left standing on a platform you don’t understand why you arrived at.

2. You need to stop sleeping with your running shoes kept by the foot of your bed.

3. Brush your teeth with unkept promises waiting for the enamel to erode or maybe dig the floss too deep into your gums to feel the familiar taste of blood in your mouth.

4. What the fuck are depression naps anyway? Stop.

5. Find better lies to explain why you haven’t cut your hair in ten months. It is not a reminder of your patience, you’re just dumb.

6. The last boy who wanted to kiss you doesn’t remember your name. He didn’t save your number. Call him and wait for him to ask “who is this?”, and then pretend it broke your heart.

7. Ask yourself why does sharing a cigarette with strangers feel like you’ve found home.

8. Tell yourself the next person you decide to start liking isn’t even worth it. Also, remember to write them poems and try to rub their smell onto your skin.

9. Write on your tombstone, “Don’t you have any place better to be?”

10. Don’t try to find endings, just hope everyone stops reading halfway.

Mistletoe.

Standard

lips against lips

you sigh like a soft summer breeze

and i like a sunburnt piece of clay

quietly crack open, fill you

in my crevices, you

complete me and nobody sees it

but me. just me.

lips against lips

yours press down with a thirst

i’ve not yet known how to quench

so i clench your shirt in my fists

and sink in deeper, and deeper

into your fading silhouette.

lips against lips

i feel all your untold stories

slip down my throat and make home

in my lungs, i will sing them

for the world some day, one day

i will make your words immortal.

lips against lips

i now dont know any parts of my body

as my own, they are all ready to

crumble and fall to dust,

i am nothing when not yours

and i am not yours.

i am not yours.

To Arabella

Standard

i am coiled like a snake on the kitchen floor,

i wait for you to swing open the kitchen door,

my breathing is shallow.

soon enough the screams that i have kept hidden under my eyelids

will start to reflect in my bloodshot eyes. 

my sadness traces a chalked outline of my body, like it wants answers,

i have none to offer, except for my mediocrity,

the overdramatic stage entry of my melancholy,

i find words but they’re too heavy, 

they feel like they’ve been used to describe apocalypses and burning monuments,

they sound too familiar and i’ve forever been afraid of strangers.
i am lost like a broken seashell along the shores of the sea of your all encompassing presence. 

i want to wait,

i want to live,

i want to try to touch every ray of the sun that drowns into your sweat and every moon that has stolen your shine;

but i can not. 

my fears aren’t at the bottom of your sea,

they are at the other end of it. 

so i make myself comfortable with the insignificance of my absence,

this unsolicited abstinence;

i only crave to touch your skin without you slipping away from my fingers;

have you ever dusted off sand from sunburned forearms?

it feels like i’ve been doing it for too long. 
i’m lying, crying, spilling blood all over the kitchen floor,

i try to picture you standing at the kitchen door,

hoping you’d remind me that i’ve missed seasons of your skin and i’ll tell you

i was busy making your side of the bed, just so you could collapse like a tidal wave against my toes,

but it’s late;

for me to ask you to return, 

for me to try to get up, walk to an old telephone booth,

call my past and say,

‘tell them you love them before they forget that you do’.

Not a poem. 

Standard

The wind is just
the wind- it doesn’t sing, or cry,
or dry my tears because
these tears are just salty water
and i do not like it when they
rest on my lip, it’s very
uncomfortable and by uncomfortable
i mean icky, and not some other
carefully woven adjective
like those i used to describe your
eyes, but I realise how your eyes
are nothing but a deep water darkness
with no stories behind them, just
the withering face of every heart
you have crushed under your feet,
these feet of yours have only learned to
destruct and defeat,
and walk away, and
what breaks me more is that
Neruda wrote
a poem about the feet of his beloved,
and i tried to too,
but couldn’t finish it,
i searched for metaphors in
all possible places and people
but nothing compares to
nothingness.

Probability.

Standard

i know the world exists between two numbers, zero and one.

i know because i have burned to ashes with them, i have touched infinity with them.

i am a believer in fractions. 

my mother gave my father

three quarters of her laughter.

my father gave her two thirds of his peaceful dreams.

they hold hands like to sides of a coin that has been flipped too much, 

but i know,

the ratio of one to the other isn’t as equal as we thought it was.

my mother,

she accepts her defeat half heartedly.