I Am

Where you are
carried past
you, past

you are. I am cold. I am dark. I am
you, falling. I am taking you in-

side. I am carrying you
under the ocean


Ghazel of Shards

Dear ones, might a sign appear, if only a shard?
Even if sheered from nothing, a shard.

50 days slipped safely past
you who have disappeared—bequeath a shard.

Wherever you flew, wherever you fell
Dear lost ones, just a shard.

Your spectral lines, your memories, even your
fear clinging somewhere. However sharp, a shard.

Do you remember us?
We wait here. Even for a shard.

If the Sky Shuts Its Eyes

The clouds will start turning black. We should not expect
to see down. Through

comes nowhere. Yet someone
will expect everything. Maybe plan it. Or just
won’t care

if the co-pilot picks up the phone.
If anyone hears.


When You Ran Out of Air

Sky let you fall.
Ocean swallowed you.

Ocean took you in.
Sky set you free.

Sky let you.
Ocean swallowed.


They Say

I only have brothers. But when the last night
tears loose, flies

blind through the smoke beyond this
realm of air, my sister

will sit with me. Will stitch
ruffles in my ashes, comb my hair, part

the ether between this world and all that —
pull me through properly. She will.


Everything Is OK Now

There may be debris. It may
be our debris. The debris that may be
may have washed up on a shore. Maybe
in Australia. Maybe more debris
on more than one shore. Possibly also
elsewhere. Wherever it may be, it has been
secured. No one will see it. No one will
find us. No one will know.


What Would We Have To Hide?

Malai is mountain. Melayu is where we make things

run. It is the current of our river. For 40,000 years,


we have been split by the South China Sea.

Our ground eroding, our bedrock dissolving


we have always made what we need.

We make cars. We build satellites.


Trust me, the planes we make do not go up

without coming back down.


When your flight disappeared

thunder started,

forgot to stop



In a sky so slippery,

even the moon slipped.

It burned


your hair into feathers,

pulled off your shoes.

It said, Come.


Dear Drowned Wings,

Apologies for sending so many letters, but how am I to stop worrying about you, buried blind under that black water, easy prey for hatchet fish, viperfish, spookfish, bristlemouths, all those ambush predators? Even if you don’t care about us, how can you rest down there

dear you, with your excessive wingspan, your polimer construction, your extended slats, loaded with 227 passengers, 12 crew, your hold full of luggage.  You who climbed 35,000 feet and vanished from tracking records while still climbing, dear 777, they say I should let you lie

with the government that guarded your secrets, your black silk underwear, your clandestine terrorist lover, your hidden hijacker, your inner fire, dear you who turned back when you should not have turned, unless

there wasn’t a spark when there shouldn’t have been, the pilots didn’t asphyxiate, didn’t lose their minds, if

there was a secret mission, if you crossed the Indian Ocean, climbed Everest, and landed somewhere on Shangri La, if you would write back to me, dear you, so much to answer for, you

carrying my friend, flying for the first time, still grieving.  She’d even named the baby.  When you took off, how your light reflected onto her face.  How she yearned for you to lift her over those mountains, across that water.


On the Forty-Third Night

You come back for me oh
you swallow me
drowning lungs fighting
blind nails drawing
unreadable blood
you once told me
your shufa symbols
can create miracles
can they