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noura Jun 2022
She grins without calculation
She laughs without rumination
She spends sleepless nights
dancing with her arms around new best strangers
I do my dance in the corner of my room.
The rhythm! the rhythm of my head
as I bang it against the bed
watch how I groove
as I pace
in the corner of my room.

Mother doesn't sleep
Mother shovels through my journals
rakes through my brain with pliers, tweezers,
forceps she drags through the hemispheres
with a wet face.

Could you be a fool
just for tonight?
Can we pretend my mind is mine?
I swallowed these things so that they don't poision the water
running through this house.
I did it for you
I wanted to be like you.

She lays out her pillow in her friend's living room and tells them
abut the boy in her fourth period
who holds her gaze like it's precious.
They giggle through the feathers
It's midnight and mother sleeps.

Fourth period I peeled my eyes.
I crumpled the paper and threw it away.
Could you be a fool
just for today?

I bled my secrets out of my forearms
and you saw the stains on the carpet.
I fought to keep an eighth of the things she flaunted for free
why can't you see
I did it for you?
I fear the day
I be come you.

Mother, sleep a while longer
you spent all night crying, clutching
sopping piles of meaty tissue.
it's yours. My skull! hollow—
I am tired now
that you see me:
jaded, wayward daughter.
Let me sleep a while longer
dream of she:
everything I could not be.
noura Jan 2022
I am tired, and I am tired of making it beautiful.  Petals flung over the edge do not soften the fall. Adjectives do not halt decay. Spinning corpses in sugar is a sticky, pointless ordeal. If I let the moonlight paint me in all her violet shades they begin to look more like bruises. A single star, a gunshot wound. I think about how small I must look from all the way up there. I think about how I won’t live past twenty.

It’s such a dramatic scene, a fanciful notion ripped from the history books by a girl who doesn't know how she’ll fit into them. There was one like her before, who dug her palms into the rails and stared out at her burning Versailles, and she wondered how it could be so cold when there was so much light. Another kisses her daughter and son’s shining cheeks goodnight, sits on the tiled floor of the kitchen with her head in the oven. There was the one who painted and broke, loved and broke, painted and loved and shattered and broke. The other flies all her life and goes down at Howland, sinks for its remainder. All of them, statues with shards of rose colored glass transfixed in their eyeball sockets.

Maybe we were made to be romantic and lovely and tragic. Maybe we have no choice but to carry these diamonds and bleed from the backs of our ankles, streak the pavement rose red. Maybe we were destined to scar everything we touch, for what is beauty without pain?

I’ll paint my nails and bite them to the beds, I’ll **** boys who are cruel by design. I’ll spin endless corpses, spin relentless circles in this frigid corner of mine.
noura Sep 2021
Flash of a camera goes off and I rush into the shadows, because the picture will look all wrong if I am in it.
Conversations circle my head aimlessly, all connected by a single thread that has slipped from my grasp.
A game of cards that I watch from the sidelines.
Memories are made in front of me and I cannot have a slice of them—they are not mine.
I was there, but they are not mine.
Because you smile when I wave
and I laugh at jokes that I don’t fully understand
and we complain, compliment, communicate,
but you are a stranger to me.
I am a stranger to you.
You, polished jade stone in vicious waters,
yet the waves yield to you
and your iridescence
and all of your beautiful stone companions. I am a pebble who gets caught
in the tide, too desolate to swim back to shore, too afraid to join you in the deep.
I cannot stop fighting the current.
There is no hope for me if I do,
for I will sink, settle on the sandy floor with my back arched and my hands shaking
and join my fellow forsaken, solidified into a gritty brick of aching bones and broken spirits.
I will no longer be your burden. I will be something you do not bother to look at twice.
You will float above me with nothing to haunt you.
But even as I am fighting the current all my life
I am still dissolving
bit by bit.
As though I am destined to fade away no matter how hard I try to stay.
noura Aug 2021
I cannot explain all the pathetic measures
my eyes will take to avoid your gaze,
all the paths my legs will journey to avoid bumping into you on my way home.
All the ways I knead my hands to the bone and all the toothpick excuses skewering my tongue.
And I cannot explain the way your presence deflates something inside my chest.
I don't know what to do with all that empty space. It echoes.
I fill it with the thimble's worth of pride that I scrape together,
every meager flake of validation I pick from the floor. I shovel slopping handfuls of sawdust
to try and soak up some of the shadows
but everything dissolves in that oily void, green and hideous.
God, it echoes, and everyone hears it.
I muffle it with my radio silence.
I look at you and I see everything I hate about myself
under a microscope.
Every blemish, every scar, every gaping hole
that you lack.
Stop, look. Here. Wrong.
I blind myself with radio silence.
I don’t know how to live with an eternal reminder that I am incomplete.
You, and the place you hollowed without even knowing it.
Green and monstrous.
It echoes and everyone hears it.
I love you, but I cannot explain my radio silence.
handcrafted product of Insomnia™ let's hope i don't hate it in the morning
noura Aug 2021
It is the mundanity of the act,
of envisioning your hand gently wrapped around the copper kettle.
Obstinately gripping the pen, while you wring a sheet of paper dry for the right words.
You, cupping my face as if you were holding something precious.
As if I might slip through your fingers.
It is this devastating simplicity that obliterates every shard of my being.
A brick wall, left at the mercy of a gleaming sledgehammer
that is determined to turn everything to dust.

I see your hands everywhere.
In the haze of steam and shower curtains,
the lines dragged in velvet throw pillows,
the cloudy smudges left on a glass of water.
They run faint paths through my hair, their touch ghosts against my eyelid.
If I stare long enough,
your palm is right there, pressing into mine.
Silver cuts through the air and delivers a redundant blow.
The dust scatters once more.

You did not leave a hole
the way everyone said you were bound to.
Empty space cannot exist without everything that surrounds it, yields to it, forgives it,
validates its gaping hollowness.
Empty space is a needle and thread on the dresser, a sellotape dispenser on the desk, a container of soup left on the doorstep with a get-well-soon scribbled on the lid.
Empty space is where you can see remnants of what once was whole.
The faith and conviction that bit by bit, you will put your fragmented pieces back together again.

The nothing you left was so thick and suffocating
that it permeated every room,
filled my lungs to bursting capacity and left me gasping for more.
Its sickly, bitter fragrance danced relentlessly in my nostrils,
as though my suffering was the sweetest symphony ever heard.
It waltzed until I could feel it rising in my throat and leaking from my eyes,
twirled until my head spun.
The nothing you left insisted on making its presence known my every waking moment
and then gleefully romped its way into my nightmares.

It was so quiet, though.
A resigned quiet, like that of the ****** swinging in the gallows,
when everybody holds their breath to watch the pendulum sway.
The crossbeam glistens with last night’s rain and
they trudge back home, muttering to themselves as the dust settles beneath their feet.
I sink into sheets creased by your fingers and watch it sway.
noura Aug 2021
That unforgiving metal.
Within that unforgiving metal lies all the things you cannot forgive about yourself.
Those freckles on your chin that you wish would expand into a constellation so that you may give them names and so that you may give them meaning,
within that unforgiving metal.

The Greeks threw their hands towards the heavens
and deemed cosmic accidents worthy of the names of gods,
although within them lie no gifts.
Like a bedazzled and jaded Tiresias impostor one stumbles upon
on their way home,
who sees nothing but the tangible
and tells all but the truth.
Still, he is clad in diamonds and gold
and thus has value in trade.
Beauty triumphs over mendacity
and mendacity over reality.

But the freckles that mar your skin,
that you cannot transfigure into the most meaningless of stars or the crudest of answers,
sit there defiantly,
waiting to be acknowledged and waiting to be named.

You lean your forehead forward to rest against the cool smoothness of its idle twin.
You could swear you saw her sneer at you.
The freckles do not budge—they will consume you whole.
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