there was a mill on the riverbank

Abeir Soukieh is a poet and writer based in Canberra.  Her work can be found here at be:longing magazine, and in Not Very Quiet and the Cordite Poetry Review.

Sabah is playing

my mother grips my hand, eyes shining

“this one used to be my favourite,” she whispers

I kiss her forehead, wait for Fairuz

I didn’t get my eyes from her
I didn’t get my eyes from her but–

Fairuz is playing

I can hear my grandmother say, when it plays, it’s beautiful, it feels like your head gets this big—

she slowly stretches out her hands

she blinks
(we can always tell)

I grip her hand

and sing the words to a song

about a mill on the riverbank.

© Abeir Soukieh, 2019