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Articles tagged "Women"

Her apron drawn on her skin

the mother sent us out in the street naked Walnut husks served us for ink Fences we’d jumped were the pages we leafed through Euphoria in the evening when she multiplied her arms two to embrace us two to push us away and make sure we had the same number of smiles and tears How to tell her with no punctuation about the transparent toes of the children whose     paths we crossed the women all red on the inside the dogs blue at the corners of their...

Dessert

As I sit at the dinner table I watch the three men who have sucked at my breasts. One of them still sucks them, two sucked them for a time. I look at the sun pouring through the window and look at the glasses on the table. I look at the three mouths, opening and closing because of the food. I look at the food disappear from the table as the sun moves across the window. I say: You have all sucked at my breasts. While they wipe their mouths with their napkins. They nod and...

Declining Freedom

Translator’s Note:  In Wajdi al-Ahdal’s novel Donkey in the Choir, Tha’ira, the rebellious wife of a Yemeni politician, has neglected work on her master’s degree since her marriage to Ali Jibran.  Morning excursions through Sanaa provide her some relief from the boredom of her sequestered life. Meanwhile a serial killer has moved into the Hulqum neighborhood of Sanaa. Once the killing spree begins, the subsequent police investigation quickly identifies a...

The Guest

She has become more like her grandmother than her mother, Hend thinks to herself. She remembered how she used to squirm in her grandmother’s lap, an angry child with a bare bottom. She was hard to keep up with as a child, light and thin, teething and crawling and speaking well before any of her brothers did. She proved that she was a creature capable of surviving and flourishing on the barest necessities of life. Her mother often left her to her own devices. She would crawl up the...

She

The single kiss That made the worlds freeze With bated breath, tasting of a tear’s salt Is all hers.   Love sowed its blue stars On our private night Covered by a phallic sky. The blood-river that flowed once the body opened Wet the sky through. Wearing pieces of moon, Invisible in light on our bodies, We left for our habitual nests In the final seconds of darkness . . .   Peals of laughter Lie scattered on my bedspread This early dawn.   What is...

The World of Men and the World of Women

Walter had no luck with women. He had tried to write monologues and essays on this subject, and had even pulled off a noteworthy sentence here and there, but on the whole he came up with only commonplaces, of which he later felt ashamed. It occurred to him that he basically did not understand women, that they fascinated and irritated him, and even though he had now and then been lucky enough to be with one, he could not shake the feeling of expecting too much of them. At first things had...

Take a Number on Saturdays

Take a ticket, the prescription, and a handful of torn money, stand at the end of the queue on Saturdays, take a number. Tayyebah’s unwell again—you’ve got to make a phone call and negotiate a day off from the office. No matter what she sees in her random way, be patient: pull the moon or a star out of her sleeve. Shopping isn’t bad, all the colors make her happy; buy her some clothes, bangles, shoes, and earrings. Don’t let your focus stray from the...

Welcome to the Club

It was a spring evening and Dylane had invited us to her apartment in Rosemont, which she’d bought a few months earlier. It was the first time we were going to see it, so Hélène suggested we buy a plant she could transport by car, and we’d all contribute what we could. The choucroûte garnie on the table was ridiculously outsized, and we wondered how we’d make our way through it. With summer on the way, we were all watching our weight and picked at our...

Encounter

I have a feeling that it is a mistake to go to the party at Mr. M.'s, especially under the circumstances. Things have tightened up once more. Again scarves have to be pulled down all the way to the eyebrows and legs covered in thick, black stockings. Again the loose-fitting, ankle-length smocks have to be worn. They are once again slashing women's bare legs with razors and shaving the heads of young boys or publicly flogging them in city squares. And yet no one is really scared or...

Behind Iron Bars

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I Look Around Me

With the alertness of a creature expecting its demise I usually look around me. Perhaps that is why my neck has a strength that does not match my body, and what is surprising is that I do not foresee live bullets from empty side streets or scissors- as a silent way of killing- but flashing glances from eyes I barely glimpse but that can do what must be done.

The Man Who Sold His Shadow

Here's a question we all ask ourselves at least once when we're young: Where does that starlight come from? It's been there before I was born, and before my grandmother, and her grandmother were born. So just how far is that star from Earth? The curiosity of children is insatiable. They'll grab a flashlight and aim it at the stars and think, This light will get there someday, won't it? When I'm dead, and my grandchildren are gone, and their grandchildren as well....

Poems for Parting

1 So slender and so graceful not much more than thirteen the tip of a cardamom branch in spring just about to bud ten miles down the Yangzhou road and the spring winds were blowing lots of women since, bead curtains lifting, but never like that again. 2 Too much love somehow became no love at all over this farewell bottle we can't manage even a friendly smile only the candle seems to be able to generate some feeling all night it...

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