IN PIECES BELOW

* اچھی بیٹی

She visits every week
And leaves following the same assurances.
She tidies her house
And arranges holy texts in visible places.
She needs no praise
And follows the same routine as countless before her.
She cooks traditional
And her Aloo Gobi brings all the boys to the mosque.
She find a nice boy
And he is a Doctor no less.
She marries well
And the wedding stays within budget.
She has a boy, Adam, then a girl, Alia
She teaches them morals,
And prayers, five daily.
She hopes for escape
When she tucks them in at night.
She hides her pills
Proof outside her four walls.
She prays for subhr** and strength.
She’s found in the bath.

*The Good Daughter

**strength in patience 


SECONDS

Tick Tock
The air is heavy
Lead smelling

Full of the weight of rivers
My feet, in black boots,
Stand firm on the threshold
My eyes lock where I know my toes will be
I wiggle to confirm

Every lungful of the metallic
Staunch air should, calm
me, lift
me, take
flight

If I jump, fall, step, lean
I’m moving

If I stand.

I’m still.

Tick Tock
The mid is heavy
Full of the weight
of choice


ANILA ARSHAD-MERMOOD

© Rewrite 2020