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Ellen Kombiyil

Deported

By Ellen Kombiyil We are on the plane now
crossing ocean. The pressurized
air is sweet not stale never
stale, the cabin set for
Kaveh Akbar

Do You Speak Persian?

By Kaveh Akbar Some days we can see Venus in mid-afternoon. Then at night, stars
separated by billions of miles, light travelling years
to die in the back of an eye.
Dunya Mikhail

Ama-ar-gi*

By Dunya Mikhail Our clay tablets are cracked
Scattered, like us, are the Sumerian letters
“Freedom” is inscribed this way:
Ama-ar-gi
Zeina Hashem Beck

Naming Things

By Zeina Hashem Beck Zeina Hashem Beck performs the poem "Naming Things" at the 2016 Split This Rock Poetry Festival.
Holly Karapetkova

Song of the Exiles

By Holly Karapetkova There never was a garden
only a leaving:
miles and miles
of footprints in the dirt.
Marcos L. Martínez

2001 Mill Road, Alexandria, VA

By Marcos L. Martínez There are immeasurable ways to count days: on the median the sunflower tracks UV streams: east to west then sleep; an acorn gets weeded out of the common area ‘til another live oak drobs a bomb then sprouts till, yanked away again;
Heather Derr-Smith

Iraqi-Style Fish Shop, Damascus

By Heather Derr-Smith The fish are opened up like salad bowls,
Slid between the metal bars of baskets,
Roasted in the wood-fired ovens, Iraqi style.
The flesh glows as if it were made of glass.
Jee Leong Koh

Attribution

By Jee Leong Koh My grandfather said life was better under the British.
He was a man who begrudged his words but he did say this.

I was born after the British left
an alphabet in my house, the same book they left in school.
Marci Calabretta Cancio-Bello

Above the Thin Shell of the World

By Marci Calabretta Cancio-Bello I fell in love with a North Korean
by falling asleep on his shoulder
in a South Korean subway.
Safia Elhillo

origin stories (reprise)

By Safia Elhillo i was born in the winter in 1990 in a country not my own
i was born with my father’s eyes maybe i stole them he
doesn’t look like that anymore i was born
in seven countries i was born carved up by borders
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