The Poeticians.

Poets sharing words from the Middle East to haunt the lyrical world.

rainbow

Barren

Thoughts on having children. Or not having children.

Barren
Dubai, 28th, Jan 2012.

It is meant to be the animal will
the divine right
the one cry of my aging aunt against the light
the cupcakes in smeared chocolate
the small hugs in the dawn
the squeezing of hands at a doctor’s assessment
the unflinching fear of disease
and betrayal
the alarm clocks for school
the every every day of sameness
comfort and death in every
ritual
the one demand your Arab parents make
guilting you into procreation
and the flurry of midnight jaunts
now impossible
now absent,

the reason our thighs intersect
make musical wars
tempests of drums blaring pleasure
the only suitable adornment for my chest as skin graces skin
as gods would
laugh
or touch one another
or playfully banter
as heaven might feel under your feet
as only sleep can bring salvation
as morning sun is to forgetfulness
as the moon is to private weeping
all one day,
swept away by the toothless
miniscule smile
stamped by DNA
tarnished
or sane,
all loss diminished by a first word
or a tottering step of hesitation
and that mesmerizing ability to suddenly read,
upturned eyes with expressions interpreted best in
holy books
written in water
only by mothers
and fathers
perused for eternity by the type of love words can’t define,
measured by sacrifice prisoners of conscience
dare not put into memoirs,
spun silk like fingers clutching,
toes, five little perfect cherubs, drawn in grand design
I cannot will myself to decipher.

It is meant to be the meaning of woman
and man
the solution to decay
life ongoing, ever moving, a
machine so rampant
I am breathless at its beat,
at its harmony,
its brutal candor,
its bludgeoning of the senses, deprived of logic,
or rationale
or mathematical symmetry
or even humor.

It’s the completion of my breath,
the atonement of all sins,
the mirth of glee familial,
agony of responsible admonishment,
that unique creation of spirit separate from your body,
the frantic fear at every second
of every street intersection of
departure
and danger lurking
in even small plastic objects,
and in shadows of
bombs heralding horror,
and for those in war zones,
trees aflame
sky ablaze
the ground a funeral
not a playground,
not a landscape natural.
How do they do it?
How does skin extend?
How does the heart bulge to encompass lavishing nurture?
The pocket as deep as thoughts can grow?
The mouth vessel for wisdom
for punishment
for the lyrical naming of animals,
and clouds,
and clothes,
and continents
and galaxies,
and the explanation attempted at
feelings primal,
alleviation of hunger,
vital
for the type of caretaking without deadlines
or schedules
or tangible compensation
or fame
or fortune,
or the keeping at bay of real life monsters,
how do they do it?

I think of you
I think of you, my love,
that bed you sleep in,
those pillows I gathered,
far from my restless center,
the way our love created only embers,
the way our love created only questions,
unventured,
your brown eyes in memory
slowly diminished,
once proud,
sky bent,
now
as dull and as quiet
as chopped greyish lumber,
splintered
silences between us,
the lines forming on my face childless,
nothing but fear cavorting in our
dusty corners,
the hands we dislocated from one another,
the way our feet don’t curl up
in slumber,
and how
how do they all do it?

Maybe there really is no planning the future.
Maybe even poetry is incapable of committing to a suitable answer.
Maybe slow steaming love is decisions made
in afternoons of somber
sober reflection,
a careful ascension to personal thrones
of lineage
as grandeur,
and not that furnace we flung ourselves into,
lit brightly,
briefly illuminating a universe entire,
to be then a charcoal portrait
a work of splendor,
inanimate,
frozen,
extinguished and without name,
barren,
forgotten, without even a tremor.

For the days are all my own,
and the nights are all my own,
and I am as far as desire can go,
and as lost as the calling of wind takes me.

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