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  November 2004
volume 2 number 4
-table of contents-
  home   (archived)
  featured poets
  Steve Abee
  Neil Aitken
  Larry Colker
  Nimah Nawwab
  Alice Pero
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Nimah Nawwab November 2004



Mani Suri

    Born in Malaysia, Nimah Ismail Nawwab is a Saudi poet descended from a long line of Makkan scholars. An English writer, editor and poet as well as photographer, her essays and articles on Saudi society, customs, Islam, art, crafts, cuisine and calligraphy have been published in Saudi Arabia and abroad.
    Her poems on women, freedom, Arabian society and the younger generation of Saudis as well as the universal themes of love, loss and simple joy have been published online and in print. Nimah's first volume of poetry, The Unfurling is available from Selwa Press.
Aram Coexpats



Shrouded Mystery

Shrouded, cloaked in black,

figures of mystery.

Tales abound of their lives,

true or false, that is the question:

What does one do

with masked figures

while looking deep into the hidden folds?

Trying to decipher the looks in the black fringed eyes:

what lives do they lead,

what choices do they have,

are their lives as secluded as they appear?

Or are they full of personal successes,

of strong family ties,

unbreakable friendships,

of an unshakable faith?

copyright 2003 Nimah Nawwab



Nocturnal Visitors

Visitors of the night

pass through our souls, our spirits,



connecting those living with the living,

connecting those living with those long gone,

carrying hidden messages

for those who can glimpse their fleeting forms

foretelling the future, foraging through the past.

Heralding visions of pleasure, visions of horror,

arriving uninvited naturally,

arriving uninvited forcefully.

Will these frequent familiar guests,

these nightly arrivals,

ever cease their call,

clamoring for attention,

clamoring for reason, for logic, for interpretation?

Will their fleeting traces be always felt

by those with an eye for the beyond?

copyright 2003 Nimah Nawwab



Appointment with Life

The phone rings,

the dispassionate voice on the phone


"Results suspicious.

Need clarification.

The doctor wants another scan.

Dread sets in,

coldness creeps across,

mind benumbed,

fear, trepidation, silent despair takes hold.

Slowly the decision is made



brush the notion aside.

Live and wait,

time slows, drags

till the moment comes for a "yes" or a "no"

for a life-changing prognosis.

Alone in countless ways,

deep thoughts prevail,

mind still closed up,

thoughts run on unchecked.



body waging a war:

devoring cells, nerves, stamina

the dreaded word with a capital C

is contemplated.

Years to live, or to be cut short.

Friends and family-

how will they deal with the news?

An appointment is set up,

standing patiently,

hospital gown untied,

the intimidating machines are set up.

Oh what cold, cold machines,

cold feelings, cold room

coldness closes in.

Pain sets in momentarily.

The machine lets up,

tight grip eased,

setting free as tests are done.

Black film against the lighted screen

embodying a reality,

white spots here and there




Doctor arrives



pronounces judgment.

copyright 2003 Nimah Nawwab