Photo credit: Ben White
To The One That Got Away; You Never Left Me
You were my distant star, looking out for me while I was chasing my own happiness.
And when I have found mine, you have found yours as well.
You were like a memory kept in the deepest part of my mind.
I am aware that it exists yet I have accepted that it’s not right to dig up.
Funny how you were the constant reason to my what ifs yet you were the only answer to it.
You were the best man I never had the chance to spend my life with.
You were my home where I don’t belong.
You were my Prince Charming that I almost had.
You and I were a fairy tale that ended before it began.
I was never yours and you were never mine.
And “we” will never be “us”.
You never left me.
It was me who left you.
Photo credit: Amal Al Nuaimi
Tired Bodies, Lost Souls
with a baby
with overbearing parents
we find each other
in train stations
into different directions
way too tired
way too lost in thought
to take a second to smile
so we look the other side
and get lost again
in the blur of the trees
the passing of deserted buildings
the pitch blackness of long tunnels
the train stops
we all leave
scatter around town
and more lost
thinking we’re closer to home
Photo credit: Hakim El Haj
By Laith Bilal
Somewhere between us
Between an eclipse and a moon coy to shine
Between your bittersweet lips and mine
Between a hello, a goodbye
A laugh, a cry
A hurtful truth, a heartfelt lie
A thrill to live, a will to die
A heartbeat, an eye-to-eye
I have lost myself,
Somewhere between you and I.
Photo credit: Eve Thomas
By Eve Thomas
weary, weak heart, you will have the things you long for in this world;
one day, my dear, faithful heart. Keep praying
for the good of this life to feed your soul. One day,
sweet, lonely heart, you will no longer find urgency
to build walls that stop you from loving, from really loving.
One day, my oh, so childish heart,
you will give yourself away to another heart and never again
your body to another stone cold man that doesn’t want you. One day,
the desires that fill you, and the hurt that kills you,
all of this will be used to flourish you, so that
one day, you, will love.
You, my heart
will be loved, one day.
And some day, mind,
you will rest. The thoughts that fill you
to the core of your being
will end. Someday, restless mind,
the mistakes and troubles of the past will cease
to keep you up at night. Someday,
the unpleasant things of this world will stop
running through the valleys of your aura
the thoughts that make you feel blue on a beautiful day
will be gone for good, so that you
can someday be at peace.
Someday, the anxious, unsettled,
rowdiness will be over, and
one day, everything will be okay
Photo credit: Odette Scapin
Welcome to Today
By Zoha Taqi
Welcome to today
where everybody cares,
we’ll ask you how your day was
just to make sure you’re okay
but don’t go into detail,
we won’t bother listening
unless it has to do with
something mildly interesting,
like jess’s new boots,
the ones from Chanel,
or the fact that she was abused
by that boy right over there,
yeah but nobody really cared
because she went too into detail,
in the end it was her who everybody blamed,
called her delusional and frail
So welcome to today
where everybody cares,
unless it requires actual caring,
we’ll just nod our heads to whatever you say.
Photo credit: Aziz Acharki
Like a watcher
of the skies
when a new planet
swims into his ken;
my soul froze
enraptured under the cold indigo
only, you were a missile –
ineradicable, hard, unwelcome
and my chest reaped
crater after crater
unmindful of your brisance
brewing dust storms –
the dark is melting
into streaks of fiery illuminations
Photo credit: Bryan Minear
The rocks beneath my feet,
Like roots, extending my belonging,
The sand in my horizon,
A magic carpet, takes me to places,
The mountains, the clouds,
Can’t trace the dividing lines,
Infatuated by the birds,
I shall have wings like yours,
I shall claim that blue sky,
Experiencing that sunrise,
Though your eyes, were still closed,
Time and spaces just collide,
In her presence the colors shine,
The trees smile, we should too…
Photo credit: Hakim El Haj
The Kind of Boy
The kind of boy that would bathe you in gasoline then give you the lighter.
Sit on a throne right in front you.
Waiting for you to set your whole self on fire.
He’s a matchmaker you see. He wanted your scorching soul to match your body.
The kind of boy that would tie you up on a chair.
Fuck a girl you despise before your eyes. He’ll get turned on by the idea of you hurting, crying over his actions. He’ll let you see every bit of it.
Especially his content after he ejaculates.
The kind of boy that will say “That’s it?” when you’ve given him your honor, desire, self-worth, ambition, this thing you called virginity.
Gave up your education, your family, your fucking sanity. Your skin in pieces, hair or whatever is left.
Gotten your hands dirty. Your dress.
Your makeup or whatever is left.
Your mental health was dangling off a string.
You let him cut it.
He said, “that’s it?”
So, yes, of course. You took 3 bottles of sleeping pills, devoured them whole. Drank them with a nice bottle of Whiskey; your favorite.
You brushed your hair or let us say, whatever is left. Wore your favorite filthy dress and rested your body in your coffin.
A tombstone saying “forever his”.
It’s all that’s ever left of you to offer anyway.
Photo credit: Allan Filipe Santos Dias
My Bitter Expectation
“This poem is the bitter truth behind my broken heart, the person I’m leaning on and the love I lost. It’s very painful to be with someone and realizing you aren’t meant to be and that you’re still in love with your past and you need it back. The war between your heart and mind is what kills you slowly and drags you down. It’s tough to fight back.”
This beautiful view
The cool breeze through passenger’s hair
and I’m sitting here behind this filthy window
with a mug of cold coffee and eyes like the ocean and a heart that’s covered with hatred.
Staring at the road,
waiting for you to arrive in the daylight,
hoping you’ll show up soon,
but before you do, I see the moon.
I lost a diamond when I was chasing after you.
I didn’t deserve this…
I didn’t deserve collecting dirty pebbles, while I had a beautiful diamond.
And now my hands are dirty from collecting pebbles.
Photo credit: Quino Al
Marred with scars
Molded him in our eyes
As a menace.
He was a forsaken angel
Powerful enough to narrate a story
For her heart to hear
And to feel
With abundant love
For her son.
Photo credit: Hakim El Haj
The Beauty of Hell
By Farah Abdul
I am clinging onto life by only a thread.
That is, in fact, what life is, you see;
a string to escort you to one of two places when you’re dead,
either the domicile of the seraphs, or the lair of hades.
Will the sirens deceive me into walking straight through hell?
Their beautiful voices have already tricked me, so they don’t have to yell.
Fret not, my pretty sirens
for I will follow you at any time wherever you go!
I am like a sailor lost at sea in the midst of a tragic storm, environed
by your everlasting beauty that I will appreciate as you glow.
Although I know that I am making a very tragic mistake,
I cannot help myself from following them, as a conflicted spirit, into their deadly lake.
The sirens might be selling my soul
to the devil as I ascend with them to what they say is heaven.
They are indeed my deadly goal
and I will stop at nothing to get them even though I am missing out on the layers of the seven.
They have cut off my string
and have left me stranded, not alone, but with their voices and the songs they sing.
Oh, is this not the fate of every human?
To be so easily deceived by what they call beauty?
Their voices have sent me to a dark place where I am met with other men,
so surely the one to be deceived is not only me.
Oh why have you done this, my silver-tongued angel of death?
I was torn between two places, but I chose the path with you,
the one that tore away my happiness and my breath.
Photo credit: Clem Onojeghuo
The Urban Truth
We have become cities
Our dreams high-rises
which feel the morning haze.
Our hearts swanky malls
which are always abuzz, but lonely.
Our ambitions crawling cars
which pollute innocence.
Our thoughts metro trains
which run only between fixed destinations.
Our bodies are urban landscapes
which are eroding
Thank you to every writer for the thought infusing poems contributed and
thank you to every passerby for reading the art of our talented poets.
If you would like to have your poem or image published for the next
Dubai Poetics edition
send your poem or request to be a “visual artist” to email@example.com
Join us again in our Poetryhood!!
Enjoy more of our earlier editions of 2017: