Surreal

by Rania Moallem   Nov 30, 2020


Here?

I told you. Gloomy are the days of the unfortunate.

So long, so poignant.

But outside, they say the weather is nice,
that life smells like winter soil in spring
and time goes fast on the back of wild winds.

Perhaps I can stretch my sight beyond these cracks
that my soul could touch liberty;
like a stroke of sunshine and drama
at the edge of a cheap old canvas;
like abstract joy dripping down my fingers
like goosebumps rising above my ribs.

But I know, you’re still not so fond of art
and your foggy colors still cover my hands;

my fingers tremble in this narrow void
and my dusty brush is so stained,
holding shades of longing and nostalgia
that refuse to draw another miserable sun
on the lines that map my forehead.
But it’s alright, I breathe better in the dark.

Stars glow at the chairs of my spine
and the whole galaxy flickers down my feet;
and yes they do hurt a bit;

but caught in constant reverie…I burn in peace;

and I could dream more often
and I could travel a bit more
if only these bars were not so cold
and not so grey.

Painted in agony that outshines my pink skin.

Like stacks of autumn bricks,
like ghosts of dead wood.
like homesick,
like homesick…

4


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  • 2 months ago

    by Poet on the Piano

    I've missed your poetry, though it's only been a month, it feels like forever! This honestly felt different than your other pieces...

    Your word choice was impeccable in this, as there were so many lines I read over and over, ones that were abstract yet you gave them depth and thought and life.

    "and your foggy colors still cover my hands;"

    - I couldn't help but think of depression here, how it can permeate everything around you, even be present on skin and possibly be a tangible presence. In relation to the line about art, it made me think of personifying depression, that it acts as a person either trying to manipulate you, to have you all to themselves, or to keep you from finding purpose and beauty in something else. Keeping you from admiring art, from searching for other truths other than the one you've been tied to.

    "But it’s alright, I breathe better in the dark."

    - This had such a heart-shattering tone of defeat here. It made me think of the fear of the unknown, of diving into a world full of brightness that you aren't accustomed to yet. Once we get used to the dark, we settle, and it can be too much of a shock to imagine going out in the world unprotected. Suddenly vulnerable compared to the dark cramped spaces.

    But throughout this piece, there's almost the romantic yearnings of wanting more. There's the dreams of liberty. You mentioned goosebumps, and I thought of the adrenaline and "flirting" with the idea of more. More life. From outside the shelter, what we're shielding ourselves from.

    My favorite stanza, that I cannot stop thinking about:

    "Stars glow at the chairs of my spine
    and the whole galaxy flickers down my feet;
    and yes they do hurt a bit;"

    - "chairs of my spine" is something I keep picturing. Like an illustration to accompany a poem, a resting point with every ounce that you move, straightening to see a future, not bending over anymore. The galaxy line was so intriguing! I couldn't tell if the galaxy was down AT your feet, or you're enveloped in it... and the pain of transferring over? To something new, undiscovered?

    The next line, speaking of a reverie, how this isn't reality, but it gives you some instant peace. And the emotion and pain of seeing it, but having it flicker. The line about the bars gave me a shiver, and I definitely see that as literal and also an illusion to invisible bars that make us feel as if we can never do more than dream.

    The last few lines brought even more layers to this poem for me. Being so homesick, you feel this connection that you can't compromise. You can't cope with the feeling of being in-between, or are forced to move on. Or how you're tethered to these emotions and memories, and the ghosts of home and childhood keep you in the gloom. It all becomes too much on the cloudy days when your sense of self is only defined by those who enforce the borders.

    In referencing your title, reading this was too surreal.
    Glad you shared this :)

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