In which I Leave Behind My Passport


green as spring
as mint leaves
swirling in dark


I want no flags
in my tea no fags
in my teeth

يا بدوى

swirl me around,
I want to dance
with my country

give her a dress whatever
she likes whatever fits
or doesn’t

أنا لا أتمنيت
ولا قلت
يا ريت

but I will come back
with all the paper
you can possibly

imagine we will fold
them into every story
we’ve ever needed

hang them like فوانيس
on a cold Ramadan


Hazem Fahmy is a poet and critic from Cairo. He is an Honors graduate of Wesleyan University’s College of Letters where he studied literature, philosophy, history and film. His poetry has appeared, or is forthcoming in Apogee, HEArt, Mizna, and The Offing. His performances have been featured on Button Poetry and Write About Now. His debut chapbook, Red//Jild//Prayer, is forthcoming from Finishing Line Press this Fall. He is a poetry editor for Voicemail Poems and a contributing writer to Film Inquiry. In his spare time, Hazem writes about the Middle East and tries to come up with creative ways to mock Classicism. He makes videos occasionally