An interruption

Jasmine Soukieh is a Canberra-born and raised Lebanese-Australian, currently spending her days between New Zealand, Lebanon and Australia while she pursues a doctorate in nutritional sciences.  She is one of the Founding Co-editors of be:longing.

I saw my angel come out covered in blood
All of it mine to make her a home
She was quiet on the sterile gloves
I gathered her from them, held her miserly
The white latex disconcerted me
She – a complex of synapses firing
Like no creature before, like no creature would be
Laid on humourless tools, copies of copies
I guarded my angel, waiting to leave
The only delay –
How to take down her name

I saw my angel take after her sisters
And them after her, but one was changed –
At school she had learned what else we were
Trespassers after the fact, errs to amend
Descendent from means to labour ends –
I feared for my angel taking her turn
And prayed she would have it untainted, unburdened
That she would be spared all the scolds they could send
I covered her in kisses and forgot
Until her first day
When I saw them see her

I saw my angel take to their instruction
Listen, observe, concede and placate
And reel from the shock of a shout-down
When, in confusion, she ventured a question
Or worse, dared offer her corrections
Cast her critique over dominant tales
Stand in her narrative and counter the fiction
Return defeated by foregone impressions
And wonder, all over, what point she’d missed
Why they were angry
What way she could fix it

I saw my angel persist in defiance
Proud and ashamed of one and the same
She moved with and against the turmoil
And found many an infiltrator hiding
She felt many an interest collide
And often, I saw her sunk in despair
I longed to see signs that the strife was subsiding
Hoped – once more, she’d find cause to confide and strive,
Though she noticed that her path was altered
Arbitrarily –
She would always resist.

© Jasmine Soukieh, 2019