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In Arabic, all love songs sung


By men are sung to men. And hung

Too many times from the rafters, 


The word for towel: بشكير — never

Quite short enough for the disarray


Of the body’s mistakes. To say

Dreaming in American Sign Language


Put your index to your temple

And curl, not so hard to manage


The repeated tendons of the hand.

The mandarin poet with official words


Of love, skin lit like black woods,

Official, absolute space renounced


In the heart, makes space with poem

In mind. Let us play this new game.


Hysteria, hysterectomy. Not his, not

His but hers. And having said this,


I take you as you are. Forever and far,

In this difficult language of the world.

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