Two Poems

by Susie Gharib (August 2020)

Group of Three Girls (detail), Egon Schiele, 1911




A Crisis of Trust


She kissed my cheek, the cordial norm

in this oriental part of the world,

a form of greeting that now appalls.

I returned the kiss with a softer brush

from a pair of lips that feared to touch

any surface that breathed

or kept its mouth tight-shut.


Herded like sheep for a very long dusk,

I listen to Pink Floyd in a room that must

accommodate my every need without the rest.

He sings to a rabbit to run and run,

to dig a hole and forget the sun,

and when the work is completely done,

it would be time to dig another one.*


A crisis of trust is bound to ensue.

A sense of forlornness permeates each soul.

The invincible states are tottering before

a foe with an aversion to water and soap.


*“Breathe” —Pink Floyd



From My Hands


Capitals have never appealed to a mind

whose reclusive bent has shunned all crowds,

but this non-monastic self-isolation

is worse than any type of penal incarceration.


Who is going to feed the swans, she cries

and grows disconsolate when the feeding-time grows nigh,

brushing toys, books and chocolate aside

running to the fridge to show me the accumulating crumbs.

I assure her that God will provide for them

filling the pond with weeds and worms.

She shakes her head and mournfully whines:

They prefer their meals from my hands.


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Susie Gharib is a graduate of the University of Strathclyde with a Ph.D. on the work of D.H. Lawrence. Her writing has appeared in multiple venues including Impspired Magazine and The Ink Pantry.