Ghazal for Those Called Longing
I brushed your mother’s voice, a yellow only fields can be, Camellia,
What can I say that she hasn’t, reach & reach, child, rope-tree, Camellia.
I detangled your father’s starry chest, a slick click into a long paved road - walk on,
Pawned what he could give for branches, but with this poem I can't pay the fee, Camellia.
So what if I touch you, mouth of Nile - admit that we’re both lost,
Purse your lips, I don’t have the kind of language for a remedy, Camellia.
& if you’re a body in a boy, burn the dresses in my words. This is for you, too,
Smack your glitter lips, kissing all the hearts & reach & reach, Camé, Camellia.
I, too, have had red stars pop in my eyes’ whites, Gin & Wild Berry, call me Camellia,
Empty they get heavy, still, when you hold them up for long enough, see Camellia.
My father, the wood
and the woods;
sometimes I find him standing
lost within himself, his hearing-
aid turned off. I imagine
his eyes a lake, peer-
ing, squinting in sunlight.
In the kitchen,
after peeling the potatoes,
he kisses the hinge
of my mother’s spine
while the fishing lines
are in the dishwater, hooked on
tupperware and split foam.
Nadine Klassen is a German poet, living in her hometown with a small family of her boyfriend and dog. Her work has appeared in Wild Roof Journal, High Shelf Press and others. When not writing, she likes to crochet sweaters with puffy sleeves. Author photo by Sofie Kohaupt ( @1aeugig )
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.