about the author

Fatimah Asghar is a poet, performer, photographer, writer and thinker who is almost always in-between two places. Currently, her heart is in Cambridge with her sisters while her body is in Sarajevo, where she is on a Fulbright grant, writing, researching, exploring and constantly tripping over herself. In her time spent not being the clumsiest person in the world, Fatimah enjoys using different artistic mediums to play with traditional storytelling. Her literary work hovers between prose and poetry, examining fact through a lyrical lens, and uses the page as a stage and the body as a page. Her Web site is fatimahasghar.com.

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Fatimah Asghar

This time
when she asks me to be her daughter
I will say yes.

I will not pretend
to be lost in the yoyo tug of her tongue.
I know the word for ‘alone’
in every stuttering language I speak.

I will drink all the coffee she puts
in front of me. Gulp down its bitter.
Hate the shadows it leaves in my mouth.

I will let her worry about my late nights.
My tendency to lock myself in rooms
I have no business in. My falling. My boys.

I will let her buy me socks. I will stop
wearing ones with holes. I will learn
I am worthy of things that are not broken.
That keep me warm when they promise to.

We will fight. I will say things I do not mean
I will make her cry because I know she
will not leave. I will revel in the security
of unconditional.

This time
when she asks me to be her daughter
I will move my things into her house.
I will pretend with all the wanting of yes
With all the hate of alone

This time, when she asks for me to be her daughter
I will say:
I do not know how.
I have never been one.

I will let her worry.

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