Secondhand shoes for sale!

Secondhand shoes for sale!

amer matar
Translation: Joseph Hamoud
I couldn’t drag their bodies all at once.
So I chopped their legs and I trudged forward.
I move in the city. One line. Tens of legs.
Blood paints a brown line on the asphalt.
City’s children run behind me.
Each would like to paint a brown line in their neighborhood. 
When I get weary, I go back home, and bury the legs.

* * *

When Death came to my city.
He reeked.
As if he’s always sweating. As if he’s never showered.
To taunt death, we used to gauge out fish’s eyes
then put it back in the water.
Drag the big ones on the asphalt.
Try to teach’em to fly from the fourth floor.
* * *

In my quite exile.
Teeth are more expensive than people back in my country.
I planted nails in my lower jaw.
For the flesh of ravens is far too hard.
Today I dried all of my neighborhood’s ravens on my apartment’s window.
And I prayed for my other jaw to stay intact.
For the nail’s rust tastes so bitter.
I dug a small cemetery in my kitchen.
For guts and feathers.
Should I get hungry in the long winter. I cook em.
* * *
I couldn’t shut my window!
I shall try now for the third time…
To hammer another nail in my head.
I couldn’t shut my window!
I shall boil my heart with elder flower…
And open my door for all the city cats.


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