I am tired of summoning my heritage out of a battered magician’s hat.
Yaani, there are times I reach for history and come up empty.
Yaani, it feels wrong to sing for my supper with a ghost’s mouth.
Yaani, I have come to love belonging nowhere, I priest absence.
Yaani, this mo(u)rning I arranged a bouquet for my other half.
Yaani, I can multitask longing in every direction.
Yaani, when you can give directions to a stranger, you are home.
Yaani, when I planted a kiss on an Adam’s apple I entered Eden.
Yaani, I know what it is to be expelled and fear it more than anything.
Yaani, I taste the apple anyway. I am thrown every time.
Yaani, the snake has no gender. I swallow the whole pregnant length.
Yaani, to create a garden is to make a border. Even beauty is walled.
Yaani, I refuse to make ugliness a refugee. Let them stay.
Yaani, do not draw fixed lines around my origin. I came from water.
Yaani, there are waves resonating ever outward. Forget the dirt.
Yaani, meaning Arabs are forever
transmuting tongue into ocean to say we are here.