Poems & Essays

19 Dec


General/Column No Response

I watch the leftover tears from a forgotten tantrum
trickle down his cheek, his body is slack now, his
eyelids quiver the tiniest, I smooth strands of his hair
with my index finger and set his black curls in place,
lightly caress, the light-brown birth mark on his forehead,
his father’s angular earlobes, his cheeks, flushed in these
endless June months, the whole universe has
tucked itself under his skin and lounges in
the chubby folds of his elbows,
I run my hands along the length
of his twenty pound body, gazing intently
at his closed eyelids, registering his heartbeat
against my breast like a mysterious Morse code,
I stay behind smelling his skin, counting
his breaths, I stay behind stroking his lashes,
while he faces the open window, his body docked
in all things vast and distant,
he lies under the expansive shade
of slow-burning stars
all its secrets,
stitched into
a mysterious arc,
I watch his
red mouth,


Rakhshan Rizwan was born in Lahore, Pakistan and then moved to Germany where she studied Literature and New Media. She is currently a PhD candidate at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Her poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Papercuts, Cerebration, Muse India, The Missing Slate, Blue Lyra Review, Postcolonial Text, Yellow Chair Review and The Ofi Press. She is the winner of the Judith Khan Memorial Poetry Prize.

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