RR

S/HELL S/HOCKED

Photograph by Rima Rantisi
Photograph by Rima Rantisi

i.


Cinnabar billows
shrouded in vaporous white
Bibendum’s sinister twin hurls
his wave of shock rocking
buildings in seismic sway
strange wind portending
hiroshimic concussion turning
houses to gaping vestiges
crystalline rain of glass paving
streets in savage mosaic
the blast roaring through bodies and
woman becomes mother
wresting
innocence from bedlam 

 

ii.


It is always those
with nothing more to lose
who time and again lose more
a truth
on tender skin hard-branded
impossible to ignore
that
not a germ of mercy informs
the calculus of those
whose jaded eye is fixed
upon opportunities
interred beneath the slag 

 

iii.


Blear-eye stare
hunker down or
cut and run
howl
reject blood
and promise it
sleep in fragments
dissociate
scream
go silent and
fuck it
grab a broom
sweep the wreckage
shard-by-shred-by-ash-by-scrap
then demand
is this how the world is to be
rebuilt?

Contributor
Kathryn Silver-Hajo

Kathryn Silver-Hajo is fluent in Arabic, holds a BA in Near Eastern studies from Harvard and studied in the Creative Writing MFA program at Emerson College. Her stories and poems have appeared in Boston Literary Magazine, Flash Fiction Magazine, New Verse News, and Rusted Radishes. She’s currently seeking representation for her novel, Roots of the Banyan Tree, the story of a young girl grappling with adolescence, family tensions, and her own complicated identity, in the midst of Lebanon’s civil war.

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Kathryn Silver-Hajo is fluent in Arabic, holds a BA in Near Eastern studies from Harvard and studied in the Creative Writing MFA program at Emerson College. Her stories and poems have appeared in <em>Boston Literary Magazine</em>, <em>Flash Fiction Magazine</em>, <em>New Verse News</em>, and <em>Rusted Radishes</em>. She’s currently seeking representation for her novel, <em>Roots of the Banyan Tree</em>, the story of a young girl grappling with adolescence, family tensions, and her own complicated identity, in the midst of Lebanon’s civil war.

Latest comments
  • Beaut iful…. you are so talented!!

  • thank you, kathryn. i am reading this poem to introduce a seminar about beirut. i couldn’t find the words but you’ve expressed the feeling i have with beauty and anger.

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