Collective Unrest


Pink Star

October 9, 2019

Dear Shaj

Guess what? I am number one in English. Ok. So I am not really number one. But I am almost number one. I came number 12 in the exam. Are you proud of me? I know you are proud of me.

I will write again soon.




Hi-Tech Silencing

October 2, 2019

Remembering the murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi October 2, 2019   a syringe needle jabbed through his white cotton thobe and the screaming stops, his thrashing body quiets down, a blade whirls and four fingers drop, are caught in a Ziploc bag then the thumb, the rest of the hand, in another bag the wrist and beyond, the blade slicing muscle and bone the chest still breathing gently a forensic expert and his elite Saudi team at work the hi-speed buzzing blocked by headsets streaming gorgeous music, a tremendous refinement over the Inquisitor’s wrack that crude device for fraying muscle…


The Sun Begins to Emerge

October 2, 2019

First, there were men who piled stones along the seashore to honor a brother fallen. Then, there were men who told stories and listeners learned the stories, preserving and circulating their contents.


At a Wholesale Retail Store

September 25, 2019

I place my receipt in the receipt-checker’s outstretched left palm at the store exit. She grips my shopping cart firmly with her right hand and starts tallying the lines on the paper slip to the many boxes and packages I’ve purchased.   Frown lines appear on her smooth, white forehead. She looks at me, head to toe, before counting the items again. I wish I’d worn cleaner shoes and combed my hair into a tidy ponytail — I’ve come straight after mowing the lawn because the store closes early on Sundays.  Her shapely left eyebrow arches up toward her hairline. Any higher…


Three Poems by Danyal Kim

September 25, 2019

The American Muslim Wife Ayesha used to talk fondly of her parents: her father from the West Indies who kept a house full of exotic birds in blueberry and mango plumage living room a cacophony of caw caws serving fried plantains in the evenings the retreating sun a brief respite from the Texan summer days.           Her mother who converted to Islam in honor of her ancestors forced to worship the white man’s God. She learned to greet with Assalamu Alaykum recited Qur’an as she held her arms old language of faith unearthed from beneath stone, beneath wood, the adhaan arises from the grass…


two donkeys and a goat

September 11, 2019

women are worth so much; come with so much everyone knows the hero gets the girl, gets the dowry two donkeys and a goat and a warm wet place to bury


My dinner with an anti-Semite in Patagonia

September 4, 2019

Since retiring in 2012 my partner and I have spent 4-6 weeks each Canadian winter in Latin America studying Spanish. It’s an intensive and rewarding experience on many levels. We arrive early for school five mornings a week, participate in cultural activities afternoons and evenings, live with a family and somehow fit in a couple of hours of challenging homework each night. Unfortunately, this year’s trip to Argentina was marred by an offhand unpleasant exchange in the family home where we were billeted.


Pick Your Poison

August 28, 2019

“When it rains, it pours.” – Leslie Salt commercial Oy while a bomb cyclone pummeled New England, whipping the east coast with snow and bitter cold, waves crashed over sundry houses in Massachusetts. Boston had the highest tides in almost forty years— which flooded a subway station next to its Aquarium. Pipes cracked from New Jersey down to North Carolina. Florida’s iguanas found themselves stunned to death. Reckoning with storm rages and whims and remains, schools shut for more than a million kids, homeless shelters overflowed, roadways and airports went kaput.



August 21, 2019

Forty three. The sell by date of my body has expired. Luckily, I haven't been left on the shelf. Someone took me out of the wrapper a while ago. There's been some deterioration of condition, scuff marks, dents. My skin no longer acts like it's vacuum packed. My teeth no longer neatly stacked in a row, or pearly white. But that's okay, no one sees behind this demure smile.


poem for anna akhmatova

August 14, 2019

she was a mighty song from the earth she was flesh breath desire she was the sky a shroud dark towers like teeth graves without coffins coffins without the earth she was love turned sideways into truth