AMIR RABIYAH

October 31, 2009

Beirut Achilles

his new leather shoes broke open the back of his heel
blood began to seep
he climbed with crowded procession
sun branded face with a mark not of his choosing

blood began to seep
can leather shoes exact revenge for having lost their body?
sun branded eyes with a sight not of his choosing
he burned and

can leather shoes exact revenge for remembering their body?
he struggled  to ascend  to reach the church
he burned and
he continued

he struggled to ascend  to reach the church
smelled frankincense before the doors
he continued
how can one evening memorialize a mother?

he dreamed he married myrrh before the doors
keep going  no time for mickey mouse games  his father said
how can one evening memorialize a mother?
grief imploded at the risk of seeming weak

keep going   no time for mickey mouse games
how to continue?
new leather shoes broke open the back of his heel
grief imploded at the risk of seeming weak

***
new leather shoes broke open the back
of his heel                 bloodied dress socks

crowded processions  ignored limpers
damp faces sun slapped

& the damned
stain of socks

can leather shoes exact revenge for having lost their body?


continue

sun slapped faces & damp name brand clothes
burned walkers smoke cigarettes

can leather shoes exact revenge for remembering their body?


continue

always ascend  must reach church

burned walkers light up  slow killers
continue

always ascend  must reach church

before the doors nostrils
flared frankincense

continue

how can one evening memorialize a mother?

before the doors he dreamed
he married myrrh

continue

keep going  no time for mickey mouse games  his father said

mother?

father   no games  keep time going

how to continue?


The Parting

I raise my hand to ask my teacher:
How can one man be everything?
The rest of the class sucks

air through their teeth
“Do not question God,” the teacher says
“But I am asking you, not God!”

“Don’t get smart with me!”
I drift off during her classes
& doodle winter   Jump onto the page

skydive  freefall  a snowflake
I land in the manger
become a talking lamb

three wise hands stroke my fur
& I feel a passage of knowledge
enter my coat sift through me a blessed comb

I search the sky for the North Star
for all that brings us together
I ask his parents: Are you sad for what is coming?

Each night I get on my knees
& pray to Jesus   He lives in a frame
above my bed surrounded by silver

His dark sorrowful eyes make
me feel safe  You see me don’t you? I say
The curtains move which means yes

I tell him I love him
I tell him I feel a sea
parting inside of me

I ask him to forgive me
for any sins that made this sea.
I tell him the rip

tide hurts even more
than when the mean
boy twists my arm



Amir_RabiyahAmir Rabiyah lives in Oakland, California. He received his BA in Women’s Studies from Portland State University and his MFA in Writing and Consciousness from the New College of California. He has performed and read his poetry, fiction and non-fiction all over the US and has been published in Mizna, Riffrag, Tea Party Magazine and the anthology: I Saw My Ex at a Party. He was a finalist in Cutthroat Magazine’s 2008 Joy Harjo Poetry Contest. He featured with the Men’s Story Project at UC Berkeley, a performance and dialogue performance project which explores social ideas about masculinity. He will be touring with Mangos With Chili, a multi-racial, multi-gendered and multi-genre traveling cabaret of queer and trans of color performance artists working in theater, dance, spoken word, burlesque and drag this October. He can be reached at: www.myspace.com/amirrabiyah.

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2 Responses to “AMIR RABIYAH”


  1. These tips are so true


  2. […] work at the launch party, are Chinaka Hodge, Josh Healey, Aimee Suzara, Oscar Bermeo, Sonya Shah, Amir Rabiyah, and Janine […]


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