Creativity Magazine

[October 28]: Qahwa Lady

Posted on the 28 October 2012 by Sarahkasm @Sarahkasm
To all the girls and women who spent their years living in alienation, working domestic vocations, sending money home to their folks, never having time to themselves, braving the hardships of racism, sexism, and segregation on both accounts.
To the African and Asian women who raised children other than their own.
To the girls who dream nightly of the open fields back home.

Much respect due, much respect due.
What's your biggest regret?
Asked my friend of her,
As we sat around the table,
Spinning saucers around
Her brand of
Ethiopian spiced caffeine
In little white finjans,
As we inhaled the steam
Into the atmosphere,
Reflecting years of grinding cardamom,
Cloves and cinnamon,
With calloused hands and
Roasting coffee beans
In the desert heat of Najd.
It showed on her face,
The experience of pouring
Golden green liquid into cups of
Silver and porcelain,
Waiting on
Women who spoke of
The tiresome business of charity:
The dresses to wear, and the people to meet,
The organisation of the gallery with
Paintings sold for a villa's worth of riyals
And how the auctions kept them busy.
She listens for hours on end,
Dalla in one hand, cups in the other,
Wondering why they feel it is difficult to attend
The weddings and henna showers
With all the events
Before Ramadan arrived
When they had no jobs.
Digressing aside,
Let me tell you her answer
To the question,
What's your biggest regret?
She sipped some strength of
Her own brew before she could raise her
Brown irises, and widened pupils,
Surrounded in a yellow pool of
Untreated, uninsured sickness,
Before she could answer this
Wearisome question
I regret all the "no"s I've said
To men as handsome as my father,
Men who had my job, on the other side of the wall,
Men who thought I had my country's beauty
Embellished on my forehead,
And the man who asked me to travel half way across the world
And become the mother of children I never had.

Instead, I slaved for my widowed sister
And all her children,
Gave them the upbringing fate would have deprived them.
I thought that, by this age,
They would be grateful
And great things would come of them.

But I've been laughed at and scolded,
Told that I have become nothing
But an old hag, a burden.
I never wanted to retire,
But I had once thought that, by now, I would stop working.

My regret is not the shrinking womb,
Or temple-turned-tomb of my body,
Or not having any children:

I have never had someone to love me.

It's been sixteen years,
She sighed
No man ever looked at me twice since then.
She pulled her henna smothered hair
Into the last dying braid
No, I don't think a man's ever looked at me since.

October Poetry: in the style of April Poetry (U.S. National Poetry Month),U.K’s poetry month is October.
Personal Mission: 31 days, 31 poems.
Challenge Accepted.
Link to others:

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