Siwar Masannat

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ON ORIGINS OF ISHMAEL

 
                                Identification of Hagar with the Jews
                                    … was as old as Christianity itself;


               Hagar called Egyptian, Jewess, Muslim.
               Hagar suffering deserts, ones 
               already explained. 

Ishmael may not have one—a religion, that is. 

               For example, who could approve Hagar’s affliction?

However, Fadia always assumed he had one; & that one. 

               Air in Arabic is one stiff dick—

	       I will proclaim Hagar contested-Egyptian-slave-Jewess-princess. 
	
	       There are, perhaps, feelings: inimical—

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ON FADIA’S ORIGINS

 

Fadia, your father was a dead man forced to go home on foot:

Martyr, he was. Unlike you; you ascended home, or was it not 

Home you ascended to? Doubly miraculous, it is. Both of you 

martyrs of this land. The desert will be covered with concrete 

springs sequestered by angels carrying blue swords. 

Or not angels. Not swords, either. Rather, ground, space, 

sea arms. I can see your arms, Fadia: & all you are is fingers. 

Remember, how the English crucified your father 

on a cactus tree? 	 His branches brittle like bones. 

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SIWAR MASANNAT, an Arab writer from Jordan, is currently pursuing a PhD in Creative Writing at the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. Her first poetry collection, 50 Water Dreams, won Cleveland State University’s First Book Award and is forthcoming in 2015.

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Read more by Siwar Masannat:

 
Poem in The Journal
Five poems in The New Orleans Review
Two more poems in B O D Y

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