Poetry Side Quest: We Are More: Confession I – Sara Abou Rashed

Creative Questers
Creative Questers
Poetry Side Quest: We Are More: Confession I - Sara Abou Rashed

Welcome to our poetry sidequest!

Christina discovered today’s poem at The Rumpus – it’s a great literary magazine & well worth a look. You can find out more about the poet Sara Abou Rashed below, but I also highly encourage you to watch her read her poem: “I am America”  

If you have any comments or suggestions for future featured poems, please contact us at: creativequesters@gmail.com


The Poem:

We Are More: Confession I
by Sara Abou Rashed


                       I am terrified   
                                                                                                    of long sentences   

and if you meet me                        perhaps you’ll notice                                  
                                                                                                                                              how poetic
my brevity can be          when      mostly              it is fear of saying too much                   
                                                                                                                                that cripples me     
lest you sense that behind an eloquent voice              
                                                            is one always weeping            and                too long a list
of what’s wrong in the world              
                                                                it’s funny                                                                         
                                                                                                    people praise me for vulnerability                  they don’t know I’ve put my own soul on the shelf in my closet I cannot reach        
                one time               a lady said        do you sell your confidence          to speak     in bottles
                                I smiled                                                           and went home
                                                          to someone she has never met                      
how could she when before I walk through a door
                                                                                                  I hang myself on the frame   
      she’ll never know the turmoil within                                                                                    
                                              or how too small a word like father or war pushes me
from a mountain top
                                                      at least               
                                                                  I know what’s wrong
                                                                                                and what parts of me
                I lock              up
people spend their entire lives spilling over each other   searching     for a container big enough for their fragments                            I’m lucky at least I’ll spend mine searching for the key        
                                                                                                              so what   
                              you don’t know everything about me                   
                                                                    no one even knows everything about themselves      
                                        if we did           
                                                                                                        wouldn’t have been invented
            and frankly                
                                                                    it’s kind of useless                                                    
                to pretend more words               or tears                   would heal what cannot be changed but I promise  
            in the name of trying                              
                                    I’ll keep at it until something in me leaks                
          and maybe                               just maybe                                I’ll run out of grief

                            before I do ink       or air

About the poet:

Sara Abou Rashed is a Palestinian American poet, speaker, and storyteller of the one-woman show, A Map of Myself, which she has performed over 17 times across the United States. Sara was born and raised in Syria but calls Ohio home since 2013. Her works interrogate history, exile, war, immigration, personal and collective memory and identity. Sara’s writing has been published in the anthology A Land With A PeopleArab Lit Quarterly, Poetry Magazine, Poetry Wales and are forthcoming in The Nation and elsewhere. Sara has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and delivered a TEDxTalk. She holds a BA from Denison University and an MFA from the University of Michigan. More at www.saraabourashed.com or her social media. 

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