These family ties
You could wrap its length around your neck
And hang
Or you could stick them down
And hold up gang signs with your hands saying
Don’t cross this border
There is a river of blood and more blood
It’s thickness is deluded
It’s thickness is folk tell
It’s thickness is not mine
I see thinness in your approach
I found better family away from home
Away from that border
Away from the river of blood
And more blood
And more blood
And long stretch of
And hands that beg
And hands that pocket
Attracted to bodies that sat
And spoiled
Always plotting
To ruin and control
There is no love in love that is worldly
They maybe amerced in blood but they do not love

Seeing hands that found yours to take
Only to take
Only to take
So next time the phone rings and you say
I am so and so
No how are yous
Or I’m calling to check up on you all
I hear you speaking
In that tone that says
I am intitled to you hard earned food of the table
Next time you call
I will cut the line
Because I know you only call for handouts
Your hands are always out
You have more youth and health in you
More youth and health in you
Than those you ask of
I won’t scrabble to the phone when it rings
I will let it ring
And ring
I see my blood has thinned
I am thick skinned.

They found me hanging
With that tie
But it was never voluntary


I am not sunny


Liquid snail trails transparent on my skin

Sometimes it erupts and flees
Other times, it makes me seize, to see

I feel it draw maps on my face; it may be transparent after it all dries
Other eyes
Would/Could see nothing
But you,
You, see the lines and trace them over with your fingers
You met me crying
You met me with same weepy almond eyes I have right now
You met me fighting,

I leaned on you as if I had physical injuries
You watched over me
Bright with curiosity, and intrigue
Your fiery eyes delved into me
I am paranoid
You stared like you know what I am thinking
Eyes are a pool
I’m swimming
I’m sinking
Right now I’m blinking
Back the liquid

You bring about peace in my mind
I slip away from this sheer water
You woke me up at land, telling me softly to deal with the problems at hand
And I see unfamiliar things
And I am expected to be two adults to my kin
I am somebody’s daughter
I am a mind away from body
My brown eyes only know the soggy, heaps
Of the grey bricked streets
I retreat, into myself
I am not sunny

You listen, I talk
I talk
I talk
I talk
And you listen
You always listened
Until I found laughter there
Next to you
Until I found I would even challenge your stares
I would hold my eyes, on yours
And we would say nothing

We would share jokes
After daylight hours
You would call me for meaningless things
I’d hear you asking
On the other line, “Hey, crazy Somali woman, is it raining where you are?”
“Am I a weather-woman to know if there are to be any predicted showers?”

Then you knew me laughing
With bright eyes
You called them bright
I’ll take your word for it

Eyes are a pool
I’m swimming
I’m sinking
Right now I’m blinking
Back the liquid
I feel so full of love

We see ourselves slipping, on each other
And I saw myself besides you
And I smiled
I needed the sun to be wild
I am blossoming

Written By Aisha Mohammed