Tuesday, December 7, 2010

On avoidance of action.

When my voice is raised and
your voice is raised
and we are screaming at the sky
wondering why
no one can hear us
over the hollow quiet
of shattered ears.

When our darting eyes
follow every refracted glare
to avoid the gaping wound,
fractured earth,
swallower of light.

Silence is a golden dagger,
held to a throat.

You and I,
our bodies crumble to the dust--
swept along sidewalks,
between columns
of spines, rows of ribs.
The cage door cracked
but the heart didn't fly,
didn't even flutter.
And still you wonder,

Why our lips move in a vacuum,
a dance not satisfactory,
a pair of lovers not communicating
but unable to step away?

There it is, that gaping wound again,
swallowing the day again.
Dry and cracked,
the fissures split
little rivulets of red
out and over the edge,
threatening to spill
into straining pupil,
still darting, still darting away.

The dagger plunges,
the river plunges
into darkness, illuminated.
All is lifted, all is light.

And then the cries begin,
and the eyes begin
to see:

There is blood in the streets!
There is blood in the streets!
And yet the foot paths, tire-tracks
paint on into glowing taillights.


© Farhana Jahan

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Beyond the Fringe


I creep on the edges
along dust-filled lines in wallpaper,
the invisible crackles infinite chasms
I can’t cross with my little feet.
Beyond the fringe
I see the soles of your shoes,
details only visible from below.
Your voice is thunder
and sometimes I shake on the precipice
waiting to fall in,
fall up
into view.
That leap into the jagged unknown
promises an inferno
to melt the hard edges I cling to.
But I douse the flames
with icy breath and gazes
(a drop of sweat falls here, an escaped tear).
Hold myself away
from the crash,

risky descent.

On scabbed knees,
post-traumatic attempts
and last-second realizations,
I stumble
not ungratefully
back along my dusty paths,
content myself with a wistful smile.
I am safe here.


Sometimes I float past
small enough to see the dust motes in your eyes,
often as invisible.
I'll land on a strand of your hair,
and you'll move on


© Farhana Jahan


Fragile frame on toothpick stilts,
I hover with my head in space clouds--
nebulae of dreams made of sequined dust.
My knees quake like a baby bird's,
wings just as useless.
I am swept along by the currents
always dancing to keep my balance.
These limbs are stronger and more nimble than they seem.
At such heights, bright cold does funny things,
bronzes and blushes cheeks
painting maps onto my face.
I can't know where I'm going
half blind with colors in my eyes.
I will not sleep, not even at night
when the black satin sheet beckons.
I keep knocking at the sky,
plucking stars out of the dusk.


© Farhana Jahan

Saturday, November 20, 2010

"Maybe being good isn’t about getting rid of anything. Maybe being good has to do with living in the mess. In the moment. In the frailty. In the failures. In the flaws. Maybe what I try to get rid of is the goodest part of me. Maybe good is about developing the capacity to live fully inside everything. Our body is our country, the only city, the only village, the only every we will ever know. Our body is the carrier of the stories of the world, of the earth, of the mother. Our body is our home. We live in a good body."

-Eve Ensler, The Good Body

Monday, November 1, 2010


I paint my lungs black
in dark comedy,
No consequences in my eye.
Teeth and bells echo and
die before they reach the pulpit,
Cracked with a million lies,
heavy sighs;
They wax and wane,
half moons meeting in a broken sky.
My wings clipped and fell down,
down mid-flight
by great shears in the twilight.
I never saw them behind me.
They were never really there.
Only dreams my feet dared,
dragging roots through dirt
caked in pavement,
a lightening-maze,
picture-mirror of the broken sky.
The only clouds I walk on
are dust.
The devils tug at my toes and curl
their sharp tails around them.
Little by little I crumble and slip
like sand into the quick.
Those phantom wings are still bent where they were tossed,
And I keep reaching,
I keep crawling
to all that I have lost.


© Farhana Jahan

Monday, March 15, 2010


Why do you sit there
with your dark eyes blazing,
pen-hand restless,
sharp wit sparring,
dry mouth silent?

What good is passion,
without a voice to make it heard?


© Farhana Jahan

I do wonder.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Like a hole that is deep.

Witty observation
that I noticed through
a quirky talent I have.
Sarcastic, self-deprecating comment
should make you think me clever and misunderstood—
but comes off pretentious (and pathetic).
Society sucks.
I am so poignant, only me, alone.
Want me.
Love me.
Love sucks too.
Love is…(this will drag on for a bit).
You can skip to the end
where I’ll leave you hanging,
(but not wanting more)
with an ellipse…


© Farhana Jahan