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September a week in by Hala Alyan


Past six in the evening, writing in the dim light with Sunshine Recorder’s Morning Dew on repeat. My left thumb feels like it’s broken after I tried to pick up a heavy pot of calathea to bring outside to water. My body is weak, my blood sugar low, and I feel the hours drip slowly. 

I have so much to lose. I’ve reached a point in my life where I can admit I have enough of what I want in this world.

Have you ever remembered into the future. Reached your hand out for things you want to be there, like the softness of your cheek.

Somewhere, with thousands of miles between us, you are sleeping and I feel a tenderness towards you writing about a poem while your head is full of dreams.

September, a week in
Hala Alyan

& I reek of nostalgia: balconies with rubber plants and ecstasy trips,
backseats, cold showers, Halloween in a shredded dress. They’re
all the same man at this point and we’re no closer to God.
They get married, have daughters, lose their hair.
Nothing will wreck your life like wanting something
that isn’t in it. Or was it getting it. I’m trying to be enough
for this body: one heartbeat, flung like a shovel into the day.
I play Nadia’s voice message blessing me with a son, but
it’s autumn again and I’m bleeding with the moon. I want
to lay in her lap like a bouquet of flowers, but this isn’t the time
for rhetoric. I’m crossing traffic in my dreams. I’m watching
a coyote watch my grandmother. It’s been seven years:
molecularly we have regenerated. I love what I love, but I’m
still shedding leaves from my hair on a Beirut street,
I’m walking into the past with unlaced boots and gasoline,
& if nobody stops me, I’ll rummage up the old numbers,
uncork lipstick, leave a trainwreck of cities and wives behind me.

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This poem appeared in Thrush Journal, January 2020 issue. Shared here with profound gratitude.

Read more works by Hala AlyanFind books by this poet • Or view my library 

Explore poems in pursuit of: timethe bodythe self • Or browse the index


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September, a week in by Hala Alyan


Comments (2)

  • L.

    I love your comments on this poem, and I love this poem so much. So appropriate for me today, and so appreciated, thank you.


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