We have received the following submission from Jad Dandashi, a young American writer. Jad is currently a 1st year student at the Texas A&M Health Science Centre College of Medicine. He also plays in The Measure Of, a “dark and ambient” metal band from Austin, Texas.
Below is a collection of eight untitled poems by Jad. We love how the writer frequently connects both natural and manmade materials, such as mold and doors, to the human form within his work.
Lest I fall asleep, unanswered
With questioning procession;
Burden always seems to fall
Upon burdened eyes.
And witnessing such deluge as this,
Inquiry lends itself to majesty,
Yet royalty escapes me, nonetheless.
Beckoning serves not a purpose,
Or purpose enough as memory serves.
I know better now,
In so much as I know that I knew nothing at all then.
Instead I stand agape in hollow holes,
Hallowed in passing by such woes
So great and so few.
The body is not what I lack,
For I see the forest in the trees.
It is the trees that elude me so
Whilst my head rests on foliage,
So generously misplaced as the sea.
I had sewn my skin to the roots of a flower in hopes of letting them keep me.
They asked my reasons for bearing no fruit to gaze upon.
My reasons were my own, and my place is not a home.
My place is not with what pierces through the gravel to speak to the sun;
I would know not what to ask.
My place is not to sway with the wind as she makes her way;
I would know not where she would take me.
My place is not with the moon as she thieves her glory from the sun;
I would know not how to console her precious imperfections.
No, my place is not a home.
I belong where the roots anchor deeper to desperation and closer to Earth.
Nonetheless, they continued to pick me from the ground to ask of me my fruit;
They could not warrant the merit of such roots.
And when they saw my toiled skin weave so close they wondered where my place could be.
Once they had fled, I buried myself over and again;
This time deeper into the soil from whence I had sewn my skin to the roots of a flower in hopes of letting them keep me.
I have grown accustomed to closing doors,
Leaving my skin to rest with paths in the floor
Where it grows with the grain and my spine exposed,
And the curvature mirrors the pine and the mold.
One seldom forgets the smell of the room,
And never remembers how the flowers would bloom.
Yet they always forget to remember the skin
They left at the door when they first walked in.
Ask me to whisper who I am;
I shall tell you who I was
And I how I lived
A story that goes
Up until the soil reclaimed my bones
And I how I began again
From the soil, unto
Roots beget roots
There is no flowering for the sake of petals
For loss is a burdensome atlas
So we bloom for the sun
Who we will never know
Who we will never touch
And even if we could,
It would be only to rust
And one winter,
Our petals will fall
Without a word
Without a whisper
The soil takes us
Petals and all
I keep a fortune in feathers resting upon my back
But what use are they
If I know not a way
To make them wings from wax
And even if I could fashion them, in a sense,
From what rope and twine I find astray,
The wind was never an eager host
Thus, the soil’s fondness would pull me close
Where the rats would finally have their say
Trace yourself back
And find your composure.
Lay down, dear.
The forest for the trees;
Aloft among their roots
And through the glass.
Once over and again,
And the forest for the trees.
You lament over their bark.
Yet this parchment holds not the will to keep ink,
And your lines were to be meager in their ways
So as to hold the trees in contempt.
But their branches will continue to sway,
And ink does not flow as the rivers do
Day by day.
I would say all was well.
I could say I was dreaming.
But I am struggling to know
If I am really half afloat
Or if this is what they meant…
The day we pulled anchor,
We wandered the seabed;
For water has been known to dispute voids quite readily.
And ever since you formed nothing but pictures on the walls,
Parts of me are polaroid’s
They say ships are safe at anchor, and not to stray far from shore.
But I have always known that is not what ships are built for.
All that has been left to me is what I will never have:
Everything I was meant to always miss, regardless of the past.
All the sudden, in a fashion,
I have lost bearing of safe and sound.
And somewhere between my ardor and rapture,
I have found a place in the ground.