Poet of the Week: Safia Elhillo

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the lovers

khartoum in the eighties
my mother with ribbons in her hair
dress fanning about her nutmeg calves

my father
who i hear
was so lively & handsome
that only bad magic could have emptied
& filled him with smoke

the borrowed record player
the generation that would leave
to make nostalgia of these nights
to hyphenate their children
& grow gnarled by
every winter

but tonight motown crackling
into the hot twilight
mosquitoes drifting
near the lanterns
my parents dance
without touching

Safia Elhillo’s Poets Tour Profile