Edition VII

July 2018


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Vitality - by Hanna Abi Akl (Photo by Hakim El Haj)Photo credit: Hakim El Haj

Vitality

By Hanna Abi Akl

The three of us
sat across each other
in the room
each staring into the distance
the evaporating void

I was sitting on an old rusty couch
the springs popping out of its legs
and showing
the fabric bare
destroyed by repetitive stain-cleaning
and Time
I held the bottle firmly in my right hand –
a warm bottle of whiskey that tasted like urine –
and rubbed my month-old beard with the other

The guy sitting across me was my best friend
and he was a clean guy
until this moment
when I watched him light a cigar
and smoke it entirely
effectively burning down

all the care in the world

The girl sitting with us had an ominous look
she bore the look of a prophet
foreseeing the end of the world

All three of us were wrapped
in this thin layer of smoke
Bad alcohol
and bad luck

It was the rut
alright;
The dirty skid
that went on endlessly
in the form of sinuous slopes

And with no end in mind we watched on
waiting for the night to pass
and another day to crack through
our windows…

Almost two-thirds into the bottle

The girl moved in next to me on the couch
and without warning grabbed my hand
and locked it in hers
she snatched away the bottle from me
and placed it gently on the rug
beneath my feet…

It was one of those moments
you can’t fully remember
no matter how hard you try –
the speed with which they happen
overtakes you
but leaves you with some kind of impression
that things were perhaps steering toward a better ending
or at least some kind of ending

The guy facing us was still sitting there
observing the whole thing
and when he saw what the girl had done
to prevent me from walking over the edge
he dispatched the pack of cigars he hid
in his jacket pocket
a breast pocket I never knew existed

Seeing him rise again
from the ashes he worked so hard to create
and bury himself in
made me swallow
for the first time
and the clot that was hanging there
in my chest
blew into a thousand little pieces

It made me see
there was perhaps
a better ending
to this
a better ending waiting
for all of us
or at the very least
some sort of
Ending.


Marking My Territory - by Sara Houmani (Photo by Nina Sharabati)Photo credit: Nina Sharabati

Marking My Territory

By Sara Houmani

In the matters of
the heart,
The mind
has no say
over what stays
& what gets deleted
but damn will it
Electrify
if the heart
comes anywhere
near them
Memories.
Mark your territory
grow a vein
& tie it to the ends
of your jaw
Send your traumas
out to the frontiers
Shoot to kill
if you must.
Cause we are nothing
we are nothing
if we don’t
Remember
we are molded,
folded,
outlined
& timelined
with tribute
& we owe
our stories
at least
this much.


Burn - by Nour Jawhar (Photo by Hakim El Haj)Photo credit: Hakim El Haj

Burn

By Nour Jawhar

Watch me, swallow who I am whole
take my heart, black as coal
dark from all the souls I stole

Burn

I never learn
I understand your concern
but I need control
and time takes its toll
so for now I’ll wait while the fire burns me down
maybe the tears will put me out, hope I don’t drown

Bright eyes
show me that love dies as time flies

Sad skies
turn blue when you smile

Buy me flowers think you hella fly
but I forgot to tell you that unlike your last girl I hate roses
and lilies make me cry

Its alright, I’m alright
I just seem to stay up till morning light
can’t seem to sleep through the night
wide eyed terrified
nightmares haunt, I’m stuck in the tide
can’t find a guiding hand so I’ll go for the ride
head don’t hurt, foggy in my mind though
ain’t dizzy, going down in spirals slow
sittin still, heart’s gonna implode
full phone battery I’m runnin on low

Used to love myself that’s a while ago
used to sleep now I’m taken by the undertow
too tired to put on a show
cause you keep tryna grab my attention
bringing memories I’ve been suppressin

You stressin me out I’m confessin
I’m already way over my head 6 feet underwater
this is torture
cause now I feel myself falter

I keep addressing this
cause I can’t get you outta my head and no I don’t miss
You
and I don’t give a damn
since
I shouldn’t be the one asking for forgiveness

Got my own sins;
Alone alone all alone rather do that stay on my own,
lone wolves strip flesh from bones

Stop dragging me back to my past
still haven’t recovered from my last
reality slipping from my grasp, and if I hear this too shall pass one more time you gon get attacked
cause I’m boutta collapse, they say atlas carried the world well I can’t carry a few stones
turned one too many people into homes I suppose

Now god knows how Imma make it on the streets
all exposed, heart on my sleeve and cupids lost his bow
closed doors it’s all closed doors lost the one I loved the most
now he a ghost but truth be told he was always cold
cause I swear to god he didn’t even change
wasn’t that strange he was never a saint
so much things I did can’t be explained

Take me back to when I didn’t think of this
can’t deal with all the people I miss
so many people that need to forgive me and I need to forgive
but I’m drained and I can’t be blamed

Found his bow, but he hasn’t trained messed up his aim
now I’m slippin into love feels like a game
set aflame I’m maimed

Headaches headaches can’t sleep no more
not since we last sat together near the shore

High so high used to lull me to sleep at night
now you come to me in dreams
and I don’t know what that means

please

Leave

Because for once I can’t turn you into poetry
I can’t rewrite memories

Nostalgia has left and all I remember is

You, dreams of you haunt me and I’ve begged you to leave

I screamed for forgiveness till I woke up hoarse

but apparently I hurt you too much

because here I am 4 am

still up


Sentience - by Elie Harfouch  (Photo by Nina Sharabati).jpgPhoto credit: Nina Sharabati

Sentience

By Elie Harfouch

I too, just like you, wait for what inspires me.
For if I write, I am consciously taking the responsibility
to offer leisure activity, and a lesson.
Adaptable to every person, who has a burden,
or not
Doesn’t matter, because I hit the right spot.

It is a self-healing method I earned,
long ago, I learned not to be concerned
because,
Energy can neither be created nor destroyed, only transformed.

We are patterned.

Shift your fixation.
Love is attitude and behavior.
You don’t need a savior.


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.

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Beirut Poetics edition
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You can check out our earlier editions of 2018 here:

Edition I
Edition II
Edition III
Edition IV
Edition V
Edition VI