Daily Archives: March 6, 2016

set my body on fire by khulud khamis

I am not a silent poet

Set my body on fire
But before that,
Run me over
With your truck
Kidnap me
Take me to the woods
Hit me with a hammer
Then, just to make sure,
Hit me 11 more times until
my skull is fractured.
Then set my body on fire.
My name is –
My name was –
Raneen Rahal. I was brutally murdered by my brother.

khulud khamis is a Palestinian feminist writer, author of Haifa Fragments, published by Spinifex Press (Australia), New Internationalist (UK), and translated into Italian and Turkish. Born to a Slovak mother and a Palestinian father, khulud grew up in two countries and between two cultures, her identity composed of both, and her multicultural background is reflected in her writing. She writes fiction, poetry and non-fiction. khulud holds a Master’s degree in English Language and Literature from the University of Haifa. In her fiction, poetry, as well as…

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Borderline by Deborah Alma

I am not a silent poet

Do you walk on eggshells asked the therapist?

No! I crunch through them

in my Doctor Marten boots,

bashing in their little skulls,

breaking the beaks

that tap and pip scratching for the light,

scrambling blood and sensitive bone.

Good! he said.

Do you eat the shells of eggs asked the terrapin?

No! I munch through them,

using red claw and truths,

spitting out the grit from the blood

but when I get to the heart,

though it cannot be broken and is not mine,

I am gentle and leave it alone.

Good! he said.

Will you unscramble my secrets asked the terrorist?

Love me after the cracks, the big fall, prop up the wall,

protect me from the hooves of the horses,

the bayonets of the men?

Put me together again and again?

No! I said.

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Still Life by Deborah Alma

I am not a silent poet

Digby’s approach is to sweep things under the carpet.

Sometime, he hoovers them up,

But then he can’t sleep

Imagines them still alive in the clear plastic cylinder,

The ugly words,

The cunts the bastards the bitches

That lay wriggling round her,

That he threw, not imagining the mess.

Next time, under the carpet.

Definitely. Yes.

Then, if there’s still life there,

He will not see

As he stamps and stamps and stamps.

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Ballad of the Fence by Mandy Pannett

I am not a silent poet

Why do you halt at the edge of the field

and why is there blood on the grass?

A barbed wire fence is cutting my hands

and I am forbidden to pass.


What is beyond this barbed wire fence,

a welcoming face or two?

My eyes are blurred from the smoke and gas

and I can’t find any way through.


You must turn back from this spiky fence –

tell me, what do you see?

Only a line of cold sad men,

broken and bleeding like me.

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