Skip to Content

يقبرني to bury me. you take your turn first

By Noor Ibn Najam

to become earth’s sugar, to be a seedless
orange offered. to want fruit
to unwind from the concept of sex

like a third leg, to want queer instead of dead

to mean lineage of vine and roots
feeding upward climb, breaking earth’s stone
teeth to pieces again—

to be tender, still. i love you because something
broke in your mouth. found the seed of yourself
and it cracked your teeth

and still, you love me as an orchard
and still, you insist, you must open my mouth

to a sudden blue meadow
where the moon tosses light
down on us in

fistfuls, the silent speech of dirt.
as if we were its

dead partner. one of us will die
and then the other. when i love you
i must bury my mouth




Listen as Noor Ibn Najam reads "يقبرني to bury me. you take your turn first."

Added: Thursday, April 16, 2020  /  Used with permission.
Noor Ibn Najam
Photo by Charlie Stern.

Noor Ibn Najam is a poet who teases, challenges, breaks, and creates language. Noor is a fellow of the Callaloo creative writing workshop and The Watering Hole as well as a former resident of the Vermont Studio Center. Her poems have been published with the Academy of American Poets, The Rumpus, and others, and anthologized in Bettering American Poetry, Best New Poets, and Breakbeat Poets vol. 3: Halal If You Hear Me, an anthology of writings by Muslim gender minorities. Noor's chapbook, Praise to Lesser Gods of Love, was published by Glass Poetry Press in 2019, and contemplates the ever-shifting role of love in the human experience and how best to worship such a multitudinous deity.

Other poems by this author