I wait for a splinter of
light to thread the horizon, unspooling
sanctuary through an unclean sky.
I wait for the gleam of a broken star. I wait
for the silence carried on the
tail of every missile. The herald
of held breath.

We seal our hands like tombs and
wonder when it will come. The wadi flood
of swift certainty. The white flag of
exhalation. Walls clutch like ribs and I listen
for the heartbeat of distant bodies,
searching for the ones casting shadow.

Follow the riverine knuckle of bone to
the gallows of my mouth. Watch while
you drop wounds into the belly of the sky, splitting teeth
and tongues. There is a silence like a fist.
There is a ravaging light that is not dawn.

Natasha Burge is a psychogeographer living in the Arabian Gulf region. She is the writer-in-residence at the Qal’at al-Bahrain Museum and her writing has appeared in Pithead Chapel, Pidgeonholes, The Smart Set, and Jersey Devil Press, among others. www.natashaburge.com

See another poem by Natasha in 5.3