Nathalie Handal

1969 / French / Palestinian / American

Tonight

water will reach
the rim of the glass but will not
allow itself to leave the glass

violence will erupt and horrors
will tie themselves to
every bare tree

tonight we will hear speeches
that tell us to open our legs
to scandal like whores

tonight we will see
tattooed waistlines and kalashnikovs
in the back trunks of cars

paralyzed memories and
revolutions behind
every house door

we will see red landscapes,
stones of light, light feathers swaying
in the nightscape

and wrinkles will multiply
on our faces tonight as every
dead raises from its grave

tonight exiles, immigrants, refugees
will be caught in songbirds,
cracked asphalt will recite old memories

tonight we will listen to the cracks of narratives
the screams of those strangled
by the night at night

we will listen to the longing
of purple evenings
under god's robe

tonight love will be difficult
and we will forget how to wipe the sweat
from my neck, breasts, words
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