Siham Karami

The young earth hardened, heated, split, then froze,
but still could not disorient the rose. 

We kept the emails, pictures, cards in files;
But where, how, could we document a rose?

Sleepless without you, nights etched in glass,
I see the world through temperamental rose. 

They grace the small, as if to taunt the great—
such beauty humbles monuments and pharoahs. 

The poetry of petals is the science
 of opening the hub, the pent-up rose.

With thorny vines like pythons winding hard,
Who crushed what seemed so permanent... the rose?

Immobilized with longing, I sent hope
and dreamed of your reply—but you sent arrows. 

One day the oceans will turn flaming orange;
The sky, a dusky firmament of rose. 

A man may practice cruelty and thrust
But these will never circumvent the rose. 

Your love, Siham, dispersed by wasps and wind,
returns fecund and innocent as a rose. 


SIHAM KARAMI's poetry appears or will appear in The Comstock Review, Measure, Unsplendid, Möbius, String Poet, The Centrifugal Eye, Mezzo Cammin, Angle Poetry, Wordgathering, Loch Raven Review, Snakeskin, Raintown Review, The Lavender Review, Atavic Poetry, Innisfree Journal, and the anthology Irresistible Sonnets, among other places. A Pushcart Prize nominee, she was inspired to write ghazals by the work of Agha Shahid Ali and Roger Sedarat.