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River in my mouth

Illustration create by Hakim ElHaj 

 

The river that starts at the tip of my tongue, through my esophagus and ends at my core.

Don’t pour it out, they say.

Hold it in, they say.

I can no longer hold my river of death.

it smells rotten, with bodies floating.

Like immigrants running on boats that end up sinking.

It can’t be called a graveyard nor the dead stars of the sky

It is not too gloomy but not beautiful either

Hold it in, they say,

Don’t let it drip, they say.

But I can’t hold it any longer

The streets will tear you down, they say

It’s spilling out, I can’t stop it

There are no dams to keep it at bay.

The dead are spilling

They won’t let you among the crowd, they say

But I’m not feeling okay, it can’t all be on me,

I’m tired and sick, today.

oh, the world won’t change even if you beg, even if you’re on your knees, crying your loudest, palms up high, chin too low. I pray the world will change, it can’t all be on me.

 

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