even our mothers have no idea how we were born how we parted their legs and crawled out into the world the way you crawl from the ruins after a bombing we couldn't tell which of us was a girl or a boy we gorged on dirt thinking it was bread and our future a gymnast on a thin thread of the horizon was performing there at the highest pitch bitch we grew up in a country where first your door is stroked with chalk then at dark a chariot arrives and no one sees you anymore but riding in those cars were neither armed men nor a wanderer with a scythe this is how love loved to visit us and snatch us veiled completely free only in public toilets where for a little change nobody cared what we were doing we fought the summer heat the winter snow when we discovered we ourselves were the language and our tongues were removed we started talking with our eyes when our eyes were poked out we talked with our hands when our hands were cut off we conversed with our toes when we were shot in the legs we nodded our heads for yes and shook our heads for no and when they ate our heads alive we crawled back into the bellies of our sleeping mothers as if into bomb shelters to be born again and there on the horizon the gymnast of our future was leaping through the fiery hoop of the sun
A yoke of honey in a glass of cooling milk. Bats playful like butterflies on power lines. In all your stories blood hangs like braids of drying onions. Our village is so small, it doesn’t have its own graveyard. Our souls, are sapped in sour water of the bogs. Men die in wars, their bodies their graves. And women burn in fire. When midsummer brings thunderstorms, we cannot sleep because our house is a wooden sieve, and crescent lightning cut off our hair. The bogs ablaze, we sit all night in fear. I always thought that your old trophy Singer would hurry us away on its arched back. I thought we’d hold on to its mane of threads from loosened spools along Arabic spine, same threads that were sown into my skirts, my underthings, first bras. What smell came from those threads you had so long, sown in, pulled out, sown back into the clothes that held together men who’d fall apart undressed. Same threads between my legs! I lash them, and the Singer gallops! And sky hangs only the lightning’s thread. Like in that poem: on Berlin’s Jaegerstrasse Arian whores are wearing shirts ripped off sliced chests of our girls. My Singer-Horsey, why everything has to be like that poem?