I’m blessed with eyes that look inwards,
that see the departed and joys to come,
that sifts the beauty that’s foiled with smog,
that keeps a gallery of lakes and fjords.
I’m blessed with ears that vie with shells
for capacity to echo the wanton waves,
to resonate to the whistles of roaming whales,
to capture the breaths of slumbering pearls.
My nostrils dilate to the hidden scent
that stone exudes and inanimate gems,
that stars transmute to ethereal winds,
that words transfuse with the warmth of a friend.
My skin vibrates to the water-drop’s silk
to the velvet of petals, to the lace of trees,
to the fluff of clouds that seep into veins,
to the texture of flames that penetrates.
My mind interlocks with that of the tree
of a thousand rings and thirty-three,
with that of a falcon who grieves at night
for having kidnapped the sacred trout.
My fingers interlock with those of the wind
who shrieks the pain that dwells within,
with those of a lingering, pensive cloud
who contemplates the cerulean skies.
My teeth interlock with those of thorns
who have impaled all types of scorn,
with those of a squirrel who loves to crack
the nuts of wisdom on aprons of grass.
My eyes interlock with the halos of stars
an agglomeration of cosmic lights,
with the rays of Helios when he departs
the spheres of the earth in his orange ark.
An Englishman’s home is his fort,
a law established by Sir Edward Coke
to emphasize the sanctuary of one’s abode.
The assimilation to a castle had struck a chord –
when I was only thirteen years old –
in someone whose house was like a port
accommodating galleys, ships, and boats.
There were always visitors around to probe
the deepest abyss of inmost thoughts,
prying, interrupting, and disrupting discourse.
I always sought the furthest room
when the kitchen congested with drink and food,
with preparations for a banquet that would conform
to the social etiquette of being a host.
The bustle and babel created discord.
The aromas of strangers who chattered and fumed
would linger for hours on eves and morns.
There were always people around the house,
neighbours, relatives, acquaintances and bores,
fingering the solemnity of my private world
with greasy fingers that relish the sauce.
Before me lies a kingdom, submerged
in the ugliest form of camouflage.
The castle is a mill and the mill has ash
and every nearby stone is draped with trash.
I walk the narrow lanes, each roofed with an arch.
It feels like roaming the heart of an ark.
I look for traces of submerged stonework
amongst a vineyard of pots and pans.
The din of transactions is maddening my mind.
There’s no way of silencing the gaping mouth
that craves for profit from the merchandise
that usurped the throne of scripts and chants.
On the top of a hill, a temple perches
whose walls had withstood all types of archers,
whose star was erased from stone by scratches,
but whose winding stairs attest to its heritage.
Susie Gharib is a graduate of the University of Strathclyde with a Ph.D. on the work of D.H. Lawrence. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in multiple venues including Adelaide Literary Magazine, Green Hills Literary Lantern, A New Ulster, Crossways, The Curlew, The Pennsylvania Literary Journal, The Ink Pantry, Mad Swirl, Miller’s Pond Poetry Magazine, and Down in the Dirt.