Viewing Category : My Poetry

Insistence of Being

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And if I disappear, where would I go?The silence left behind will not be heardAmidst the noise. How long would it takeFor anyone to notice the absence? AndWould it matter? Would any of it matter?A church bell tolls, water gurgles,A bird chimes another,…

Insistence of Being

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And if I disappear, where would I go?The silence left behind will not be heardAmidst the noise. How long would it takeFor anyone to notice the absence? AndWould it matter? Would any of it matter?A church bell tolls, water gurgles,A bird chimes another,…

Prison

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We made of love a prisonTo hold us bothLike we couldn’t hold each otherWe furnished it wellWith all the loveWe couldn’t show one anotherAnd in it we drownedIn a display of domesticityBorn of our fevered dreamsBut we ended up forgettingWhere we startedO…

Prison

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We made of love a prisonTo hold us bothLike we couldn’t hold each otherWe furnished it wellWith all the loveWe couldn’t show one anotherAnd in it we drownedIn a display of domesticityBorn of our fevered dreamsBut we ended up forgettingWhere we startedO…

Smells

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Reposted for the occasion of the first Beirut Pride and its continuing struggle against homophobia and religious intolerance: 

Originally featured on Helem‘s From Heart to Soul: A Feast on Poetry.

The clouds floated out the window
above their chatter;
it was the time when happiness was
capturing their radiant edges
in freshly discovered tempera.

The sea was stoic still in those days,
a giant ashtray for sunbeams.
I had just discovered Michelangelo:
David and Adam glowed
with the sheen of first porn.
And it was raining in Beirut.

My dad waited all evening for my call
and I stubbornly waited for his.
In the end, we didn’t speak.
When I spoke to him today
his voice sounded metallic
like the rain in Beirut.

In between spells of poetry
I cleaned my cum off the bathtub floor.
I awaited something to happen that night,
But nothing stirred.
So I taped myself jerking off
and jerked off to it.

Not knowing what to do next,
I poured my values into a large plastic yellow bowl
and popped it into the microwave,
hoping that in the patter
I may divine my answer.
But my values melted
with the smell of Styrofoam.

The hallway was growing longer,
sprouting doors as it went.
I just stood there,
scratching a carpeted post.
And for some reason,
if you came close enough,
you could smell the sadness, too.


(Originally posted on 23 November 2005)

Smells

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You’d think progress is a continuous forward motion, but it apparently meanders, loops on itself, and sometimes feels like it’s going nowhere. Such is the case of gay rights in Lebanon apparently. Twelve years ago this poem was included in Helem‘s From Heart to Soul: A Feast on Poetry. The poem wasn’t anything special: it’s not anthemic, it’s not heroic, but it is at times explicit in a casual manner. And it is this casual explicitness that feels revolutionary now. I repost it here, on the occasion of the first Beirut Pride and its continuing struggle against homophobia and religious intolerance, because it pisses some people off, those that need to be pissed off. #WhenWeRise #وصمة_عار

The clouds floated out the window
above their chatter;
it was the time when happiness was
capturing their radiant edges
in freshly discovered tempera.

The sea was stoic still in those days,
a giant ashtray for sunbeams.
I had just discovered Michelangelo:
David and Adam glowed
with the sheen of first porn.
And it was raining in Beirut.

My dad waited all evening for my call
and I stubbornly waited for his.
In the end, we didn’t speak.
When I spoke to him today
his voice sounded metallic
like the rain in Beirut.

In between spells of poetry
I cleaned my cum off the bathtub floor.
I awaited something to happen that night,
But nothing stirred.
So I taped myself jerking off
and jerked off to it.

Not knowing what to do next,
I poured my values into a large plastic yellow bowl
and popped it into the microwave,
hoping that in the patter
I may divine my answer.
But my values melted
with the smell of Styrofoam.

The hallway was growing longer,
sprouting doors as it went.
I just stood there,
scratching a carpeted post.
And for some reason,
if you came close enough,
you could smell the sadness, too.


(Originally posted on 23 November 2005)

Somewhere

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Somewhere there’s a revolution, I hear,

Somewhere I used to know…

And here, in a darkening dusk,

In an expanse of grass

Turned purple by the silence,

I turn away…

This is life stripped of excesses:

No one else for days,

Voices all digitized,

The constant hum of a world

Churning itself.

I laugh just because

I miss the sound.

And they come

Seeking life;

They turn them away

Not knowing

It is life they bring.

Tell no one this,

I say it here in confidence,

Throw it to the dustbin of words.

There used to be someone

He wanted to be great

But forgot—

Where was I?

Ah, yes…

(Originally posted on Sep. 17, 2015)

Somewhere

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Somewhere there’s a revolution, I hear,

Somewhere I used to know…

And here, in a darkening dusk,

In an expanse of grass

Turned purple by the silence,

I turn away…

This is life stripped of excesses:

No one else for days,

Voices all digitized,

The constant hum of a world

Churning itself.

I laugh just because

I miss the sound.

And they come

Seeking life;

They turn them away

Not knowing

It is life they bring.

Tell no one this,

I say it here in confidence,

Throw it to the dustbin of words.

There used to be someone

He wanted to be great

But forgot—

Where was I?

Ah, yes…

(Originally posted on Sep. 17, 2015)

Dark

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Here, in this dark little space before sleep,I take a look back at the day, limp with apathy,and the days before it, the wideyawning expanse of them…I glimpse behind the purpose I made for it,ill-fitting like an older sibling’s,and tenuous like hesit…

Dark

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Here, in this dark little space before sleep,I take a look back at the day, limp with apathy,and the days before it, the wideyawning expanse of them…I glimpse behind the purpose I made for it,ill-fitting like an older sibling’s,and tenuous like hesit…

Silent Green

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We pass through death quietly,Sight unseen–Slipping like ghosts at a party,Unnoticed–Haunting the spaces that carryOur smells like second skins…Sideway glances in a crowd,The sound of laughter receding,Entering the cool darkness of the airWillingly…

Silent Green

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We pass through death quietly,Sight unseen–Slipping like ghosts at a party,Unnoticed–Haunting the spaces that carryOur smells like second skins…Sideway glances in a crowd,The sound of laughter receding,Entering the cool darkness of the airWillingly…

Soon Again

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Soon again I’ll be home,Home that’s no longer home.Soon again I’ll be backWhere I left off and I began.Soon again I will circle the rooftops,Throw my pigeons into familiar skies,But my pigeons will not return…Soon again I’ll be back in my roomThat’s …

Soon Again

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Soon again I’ll be home,Home that’s no longer home.Soon again I’ll be backWhere I left off and I began.Soon again I will circle the rooftops,Throw my pigeons into familiar skies,But my pigeons will not return…Soon again I’ll be back in my roomThat’s …

The Other Way

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I remember you vaguely,
an early story of those days when
the world was expanding still…

I remember your name before
it shed a few letters, back when
the night was dark and
engulfed us, ignorant,
in its silent siren song.

I remember, vaguely, the way
I must have felt about you when
my body was uncharted yet,
and without a compass,
you somehow found a way.

Your voice, in those days before
it learnt its modulations–
when I prayed for it on the hour
and god was immortal still…
Now reaches me,
lilting and laden,
and I forget
to recognize it.

And in the silence between
when you extract yourself from
the loudness of your days and
the reverberation of my name,
we say all that we will ever say:
the love subtle and passing,
memories all but inconsequential,
and the two of us long estranged.

I still ponder, with fresh amazement,
at how it’s come to this…
At the full circle of anonymity,
and such dates that compel us
to reach across the vast divide
that has grown in between,
leaving us looking, always,
the other way…

(Originally posted on June 3, 2007)

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