Poetry: Ahmad Al-Khatat

Pack Of Cigarettes and Liquor 

I'd swap my rusty flesh and chilly blood 
for a pack of smokes and a drink. 

I am willing to sacrifice my emotions and peace 
for a pack of smokes and alcohol. 

I'm willing to surrender my citizenship and foreign passport 
for smokes and whisky. 

I am willing to compromise my values and ethics 
for a pack of smokes and alcohol. 

I'd swap my wounded heart and warm hands 
for a pack of smokes and a drink. 

I'd swap my youthful smile and tears 
for a pack of smokes and a drink. 

I'm willing to exchange my healthy organs and memories 
for smokes and whisky. 

I'd exchange my imprecise accent and colourless fantasies 
for a pack of smokes and a bottle of vodka. 

I will never give up my past and hometown 
for a coffin whom I tried to steal before my sentence 
by hanging with death.
***


Two Fingers Crossed

I'm wondering if my depression stems
from my past or what I'll become in the future.
Is it because I speak your language with an accent?
I'm sorry, but my accent represents who I am.

I wish I could erase children's memories
of everyday genocide with a pencil and eraser.
My phone isn't charging. My cousin is wearing
my face mask. As I lay dead in my blood-soaked bath.

Does the moonlight still brighten your melancholy heart?
What keeps your emotions awake on your own?
Can you dream about kissing me the way you usually do?
Who wouldn't love a walk under the twinkling stars?

I miss the way you hold my frigid hands behind my back,
with at least two fingers crossed.
When I inhale your breath, I trust my senses completely.
Your amazing voice is the music that brings me joy.
***


Flowering in The Rain

Are you going to bloom in the rain tonight?
I hear your footsteps in the darkness,
I smell your scent on the budding seeds,
and wonder whether you are among the stars.

This life can only be lived due to your existence.
I feel like I am losing myself more than usual.
After losing everything I cared about,
I considered migrating to a different country.

Regrets have shattered some of my aspirations,
and I miss giving my all to love someone like you.
Why does tonight’s rain sound so sad?
I've cried for ages, and you haven't flowered yet.

Thousands of breaths push me towards your sweet lips.
Allow our sorrows to touch the drenched grass in the park,
and follow the moonlight to
find me waiting with a rainbow umbrella…
***


Bio: Ahmad Al-Khatat is an Iraqi Canadian published poet and writer. In addition to his Pushcart Price 2020 nomination, he received a nomination for Best of the Net 2019. His poetry has been translated into other languages and his work has been published in print and online magazines abroad. He resides in Montreal, Canada, now with his spouse.


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