of crime and love
by Aisha Ahmed
i lie in bed as a child folded
between light and dark, the stretching of my god’s hands
over the world and myself. the shift of fabric against my skin, Allah’s caress
for He knows we are not all light and
that is okay. is it such a crime to be held in mortal arms?
father kneels and prays,
cradles my darkness in the crevices of his hands
mourns me as i cherish thoughts i should not cherish
i do not need to be touched to be loved, yet is it so wrong to
glide my thoughts over fantasies? some may call it freedom
others, disgrace but
regardless i fold scandal aside and bow my head,
soften my thoughts for morning and clasp my hands in communal prayer
pay my zakat and bleed
as i move with grace and vulnerability not out of command or rebellion.
daylight kisses the nape of my neck and i rise.
aisha is a first-year at the new orleans state university. her works seek to explore the nature of emotion, relationships, and vulnerability. her work has been recognized by the Blue Marble review, Kalopsia Lit, as well as receiving a silver key from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards.