Poetry / Poets

BONNE NUIT by Sara Khayat

You can never really appreciate the

Idea of–the real beauty of–

Innocence

Until it’s

Gone.

 

You’re born with instinct and instinct

Alone.

And before you know it the years have taught you to notice

The color of your cousin’s skin being

Darker.

Or the different foods and

Languages at family reunions

 

And you wonder why you wondered

It all in the first place and then

You realize it’s what they taught you

To do

In

school.

 

Why your grandpa stood in a

Corner speaking another language

To your dad. And everything they

Said was about you,

You assumed, because

Mystery was left in the mind of

A child.

 

So you asked your mom how to say

Goodnight in French. And you kissed

your grandpa for the last time

Before the phone was ringing

long

Distance

And on the other end is

An aunt telling you to get your

Mommy because it’s very

Important.

 

And you find out your dad has lost his dad and

you tried to just be around

him

because that’s all you knew

how to do as a child when life got

heavy.

 

But all he could do was

Sweep the kitchen floor and tell you

“That’s life, hunny,” and you’ll always wonder

What he meant by that

And one day you’ll know

And you’ll sweep the floor

And remember.

 

And you want to unlearn

Everything and act like a

Dog that doesn’t know left from

Right

 

Playing dead on the porch

Until your owner

Moves their attention

To much more significant

Things.

 

And for a few moments you wish you

We’re those more important things

But then you’ll remember

Just how broken this life

Can leave you.

 

And you’ll yawn scratch at fleas

And hope the only thing to know

Was the sound of food overflowing

Into your

Bowl.

 

(I’m only human.

I’m only human.)

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4 thoughts on “BONNE NUIT by Sara Khayat

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