by Tasneem Maher
albi stays bi amman every time i leave, biddal remembering the shape of every cloud bitmor across your skies. bas i won’t be here dayman, we both know. you were made for eternal summers in my head where my feet ached min kol jbalek w tlalek. gold sea of olive oil from the trees at teta’s house w sahraat on her back porch. i remember the glimmer of your stars, just visible when i look past el amar w kol your pinprick streetlights. you know, i didn’t love myself until i loved you w kol your moons – blood moon, blue crescent – w your never-ending azmeh, my head leaning out of the car window. my favourite part is driving through tunnels b nos el leil with the quiet rush of air w your sudden bareness. it was respite from you zaman because when the sound faded, i no longer had to fill the space with my feeble tarjameh anymore. understand that to adapt was to lose the the meter and verse of lineage, to break the tangled words lodged in my mouth. hadi-l-ayyam, i let xanthic sunsets wash over me, comfort myself with your familiarities, the things we both cherish. zaman, it wasn’t like this. zaman, i hated you.
Tasneem Maher is an Arab writer and poet who encourages theatrics and melodrama of any kind. A Best of the Net nominee, her work has been featured in Vagabond City Lit, Kissing Dynamite, and Jaffat El Aqlam, amongst others. She is an alumna of the Glass Kite Anthology Writing Studio and the Adroit Journal Summer Mentorship Program, and is currently a third year English Literature student. She is also Fiction and Personal Essays Editor at Sumou Mag. She tweets @mythosgal.