The Egyptian

August 15, 2016 § Leave a comment

 

How long will I hold this in?
When there is no fire burning inside of me
And no fairies in green suits
Singing songs of joy.

This is not a tragedy;
This is nothingness.
The greatest of calamities:
A human soul was
Filled with hopes and dreams,
Until a moment flipped it upside down,
And a thousand jailed in the streets
Lit up a fire in the hopeless
Who were watching TV.
The jailed heroes became spies.
Five years ahead and
Now I am a traitor,
Void of hope, of meaning,
Of anything.

That is my sorrow;
This is my confession:
I am afraid as you all are,
As a star on television,
and an actor on stage
I rehearse my act hours everyday
As I stare at the ceiling
I fear to speak
Because my imagination has hindered me,
And my friends write me letters
From behind bars and under coffins.

Of all the motions,
I was seduced to nothingness,
And now I am the void
That holds this nation together.
We are all one bad day away
From a hopeless revolution
Against faith.

A Happy Artist

June 17, 2016 § Leave a comment

I have been stripped off my literary allowance;
a few months now, and the stink reeks off me
for showers a few and misery a scarcity.

it prevents me from virtuous poetry.
glee is a sin, and I need my misery,
but how, in this poverty?

dear friend,
I have promised honesty:
a crime –creative blasphemy.
chains of desperation hold me down,
so will you donate a part of yourself to me?

I need it to write a poem,
rip it out from my skull:
this instrument has been rusty
since bliss made my veins its home.

look me in the eyes, and hand me a memory
from your childhood; I can use any
preferably sprinkled with a tear or plenty.

please, don’t think I use you;
I commit no crime when I do,
it is only a reflection;
when you look into my eyes,
don’t you see yourself too?

New Year’s Day

April 2, 2016 § Leave a comment


The feeling your company brings to me
is like the streets of China
during New Year ’s Day.

And in a dark alley, far in a distant town
a person lies, staring at the starry lit sky
surrounded by the sounds of people chanting in the background.

Their laughs and ditties
do not bother his mind
for he knows they are still naive
and optimistic for this New Year’s offering,
that somehow, a date on a calendar, or certain numbering
can bring about eternal change, this time round.

Like the children, your smile is filled with purity;
unstained by the sorrows life brings,
and free from the chains of greed or its six fellow sins;
like the children, you deliver joy to the old man’s heart,
when even his face cannot smile,
and hollowness affirms its grip on his toes.

With every jump their feet fly from the street,
like hiccups of drunken men, or the hills seen from a lake,
like the man who no longer sees the greenery of trees,
you present to me all beauty in a plate.

So as I lose all hope, and feel myself drowning
in the depths of the cruelty of men,
you hold my hand,
and say, “Look up at the sky.
It’s New Year’s today.”

The First Time We Meet

March 31, 2016 § Leave a comment

Yesterday was the first time I meet an angel.

I was seated with my friend by a table that held a mountain of books, and both of our laptops. After half an hour of discussing equations for our upcoming exam, I saw two women waiting for their order by the counter. One of them had wings, and they were big –so big that it must’ve been extremely inconvenient for her to pass by the café’s entrance door. She carried them gracefully like her smile. They were blue at their core, with feathers white and grey like the sky that cloudy day. Her yellow eyelashes curled up to her forehead, and her hair was white.

To my pleasant surprise, they sat at the table beside us. I could overhear the girl with the magical wings speak over and over, and for two hours, she barely ever stopped. I could not stop looking. I did try, of course. I had to remain subtle or else they’d have considered me a creep. Behind her eyelashes were glittering stars, as though galaxies seen from a painter’s brush. I contemplated walking up and saying anything. I contemplated for a while.

After I mustered all the guts in me, I walked towards them, firmly placed my hand on the table and said, “Excuse me.”

“Yes?” they both answered.

I finally looked towards the winged girl’s friend and said, “I think you look very beautiful.”

 

An Arab and an Israeli Meet

March 21, 2016 § Leave a comment

This is based on a true story.

The night wrapped its arms around us as we ran, and the wind came scorching through. We entered the bus, and as we socialised surrounded by the walls of the world, one exclaimed, “You should visit the Holy Land!”

Seated on the floor, I felt a breeze amidst a sea of people, amongst the warmth of laughter and short introductions –amongst hopeful diplomats and young adults. Once hearing his statement, I stood up.

His associate exclaimed her desire to visit my country, which they had stolen decades ago –the same land thousands had died for, millions had their hearts torn and stepped on by their guns. She exclaimed her enthusiasm to visit the ground where her people had tortured my own.

“Oh, why don’t you?” I replied, dodging the overwhelming elephant in the room.

“Because of security and stuff.”

“Ah, yes.”

Of course, it was security that prevented her from visiting.

Forty minutes later, we arrived where everyone was dropped off, and the four of us remained, split into two. Cousins, they’d call us, closer to one another than the driver who dropped us in the middle of God knows where.  Thrown out of the bus into the black pit of the night, and once again, hugged by the cold, we recognised that all four of us arrived in a foreign land.  We had no other choice but each other’s company.

Two, and two, from each side, like a moving box, we walked and talked. I heard laughter from behind me; we joked and talked about God knows what. I could hardly recall any of our conversations, for the elephant that walked beside us spoke louder than our hearts. I feared for my life, and certainly did they.

“I’m balding; maybe I’ll start wearing a hat like you when I’m older.”

Funny, he thought himself to be, as though acting ignorant towards the scarf I wrap around my head.

Continuing the play of stupid-pretend, we proceeded to walk.

The Night Falls

December 20, 2015 § Leave a comment

I have a secret, my lady –
A secret I hold close to my heart.
I meet you every night
And no, no
I don’t mean to frighten you
Please, don’t think so
You see, I once read in the books
Of history and philosophy
That our souls fly up higher than we can see,
When we sleep, they say,
Our spirits fly away

I meet you every night,
Up in the heavens,
We, dance and sway,
Imagined, near the bay
I look into your eyes,
I see your smile
I feel both dead and alive

But don’t be frightened, my darling,
It’s only the books
That say it’s this way,
And I’ve never been religious,
Nor pious, my dear
But a road sign towards your door,
Anyone in sight,
Even that beyond the shore,
Has me willing to drown and fight,
To meet your eyes,
I will
To stream my fingers down the curls of your hair,
As we would on the slides of our backyard
Any sign
That I be reignited
By your presence, once again,
I will battle more and more

And in the day, I will work restlessly,
Until all air in me
Is pulled, in a puff, ruthlessly,
I will wake early
Waterway the coffee,
I’m in no need for a chemical remedy
When I will soon hear the voice of a melody

I will work day, and day
So when I tread to my bed,
My dear, I fall head-down
And sleep instantly,
And hope, these books be true
And our souls rejoice together
For one more night with you.

eeny, meeny, miny, moe

December 19, 2015 § Leave a comment

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Everyone’s become a foe
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Take my hand and let us go

I hear a crow, ‘tag you’re it!’
Long, long, after my curfew
I hear a spark
‘Clap, clap’, another house blew

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
You will be the next to go
Not by bullets, but by snow,
It’s cold, you’ve got nowhere to go

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
You are the next big show
Your name’s on the radio
Death will come and kill you slow

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
You are stronger than the blow,
Run to Mexico or Morocco
And they’ll force an embargo

Tagger, my tagger,
Why are they running away from you?
I’m in the playground,
Tag me too

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Another slur at the metro,
Cover your head or wear a bow,
You’ll still be called a hoe

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
To the man in the photo
Why’d you have to stoop so low?
Stepped on children’s toes, shipped  them in the cargoes

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
We will still write your bio
About how you protected us from ammo,
While you murdered their sons with guns long ago

Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Where can I find you?
Eeny, meeny, miny, moe,
Take me away, my time’s due