The House Of Rumours
(for Monira Qais)
I had just slipped straight from my mother’s womb
into this house where rumours breed like spawn,
and the grown-ups grinned as I stood like a torso;
my eyes blinked at the dazzle of their carnival lights.
And the lords of life told I’d just be freaking out;
like a trapped mouse, I stiffened with starlit fear.
Grappling with a lot of traumatic rumours at home,
I came of age and slumped as a column in the quake.
In all my autumns when the sky fell dripping blue,
I didn’t see ripples of rapture on pools ever spread,
suffered year after year a burn in the flames of fire,
long tortured by fabrications and lack of tears.
My life tells of the slow burn in the snaky flames;
and now there’s my body fills with blisters of grief.