Poem

Doctor Qureshi Dares My Mother “Maryam Jaan,” he says, “You must be proud of your son Farouk, his wealth —praise Allah— how he has made himself great in America.” The doctor’s white hair is unruly like mine, his bi-focals tipsy, his elbows rest on the mahogany table hand-crafted in Mexico for Ethan Allen, classic Yankee…

Poem

“THE PRESIDENT IS HUMAN. HE GETS SICK” — White House Press Secretary Responding to Reporters’ Questions in The New York Times, January 9, 1992 A thousand tiny dots of light: I diminish the noise. Duped smirk on aging face, eyes eclipsed by spectacles, The President, previously recorded, vomits, moving his lips slowly. Watching me watching…

Poem

Kismet “This can’t be me,” Mother says, leaning forward in a wheelchair, “Must be some shriveled woman,” “with parched skin, frayed hair,” she adds, “Not me. I’m only 30.” Mother gives me my Smartphone with which I clicked her photo during a commercial break, watching “Kismet,” Hollywood film made in 1955 when Mother was in…

Poem

India is Blinding Young Kashmiri Protestors… The Guardian UK 18 July 2016 “They asked for it,” a family friend tweets, “#AccheDin are here again.” Go fuck yourself I want to shout back, our blindness an affront to our clear seeing, remembering the last time I saw this dear friend, not virtually, but at the Oberoi…

Poem

Dear Shahid Many thanks for your lively note concerning ghazals Just what I need to write: heart-rending ghazals Meant to call you but have been busy this fall at school New assignments every week, none for mapping ghazals Enrolled in Prosody with Alfred Corn; Poetics with Lucie Madness with Howard; precious time for encoding ghazals…

Poem

Mother Writes to Indira Gandhi The Hon’ble Mrs. Indira Gandhi, Prime Minister, Murti Lane, New Delhi. 7 July 1975, Dear Madam, How are you? What’s with this Emergency? India’s star is fading while you’re sexing guru Brahmachari? A pilot bucklemeups in his sexjet. Pompous rogue has intensified wireless: whispering, murmuring: shanti, ashanti. Indira Ji, please…