My face does not have much features
These days
So as not to deceive the beggars
With my smile
So as not to let a baby girl in the market
Notice my grief
While spurring the fish with her small finger
To awake them
I am afraid that my brown scowl
May frighten the train passengers
While no wine in my heart
To bet the flower
Which wrote the word “come”
On my hand


I walk on the snow
As a shadow
Leaving no trace
I sit
Or almost do
On the brink of the wooden bench
As a statue
Not greeting the birds
Which approach and look at my nose
Playing guessing game
“from which country”
“how lavender roses are still on his shoulders”
An old man told me
That a bomb had fallen in the place
I am now
But the seasons wash the dynamite
And the trees do not afraid of ghosts
I said: what about you?
He replied: I survived…but I lost my features


Poem Rami Zakaria, 2016. Translation from Arabic Shurouk Hammoud, 2017.

Shake hearts column publishes poetry in three languages.
Painting by Raed Zeno.