Upended ruptured sky and clean burst of lung. Urgent striation
beyond reckoning. Beyond borders that pray. Beyond gods
that watch. Beyond hollow hands pushing asylum. This too
will meet you. Say nothing. This too will condemn.
They will take you to the ground. Act like it is home. Meet it with
longing and cry out: mother of dogma, black-draped sanctuary,
the missing has been a mountain.
They will lock the door. Squat jaws loom, chipped
with tributaries of disaster. Fat wrists painted red. There will
be old knees that tell stories back to front. This is one of them.
There will be another. And it will buckle.
Now shield your face. Bury your eyes up to the black
and remember the girl caught plastic forever, skin emptied
of every scar.

Natasha Burge

Natasha Burge is a writer from the Arabian Gulf. Previously the writer-in-residence of the Qal’at al Bahrain Museum, she is currently pursuing a PhD and working on a novel. Her work can be found in The Smart Set, Roads & Kingdoms, and Forge Literary Magazine, among others. More can be found at www.natashaburge.com