Poetry by Farah Lawal Harris

Posts tagged “sight


there are some people who honestly believe that
if they focus intently enough,
they can make the flame of a candle
rise and fall with their thoughts.
much too often, i have been a fool,
played the fool for that same trap,
thinking that i can create sparks in acquainted hearts,
mistaking kindness for interest
and my loneliness for the possibility of love.
once a pyromaniac,
i now flee from fire,
keep an extinguisher on my back
and with it, i aim and fire
at possibilities,
the potential for romantic stories,
trapped in the fog of my history,
chest burning too painfully to see reality.
i no longer even attempt to stare,
have substituted my gaze for a blank empty glare
like a blind woman who has miraculously regained her sight
but still wears sunglasses because
she’s used to not opening her eyes.

is my fear that the future is too bright
or that all will be white?
absence of color,
absence of hope,
no patience to stare at fire,
seeking another foolish hobby
like solitude.

Booty Call

you say that you enjoy my presence in your life,
but for some reason, i can’t figure out why
you only wanna see me
at night.
i prefer nice lunches
and holding hands in the street
but you seem more into
groping hands on my curves
at hours when most people sleep.
i don’t get it–
i look at myself in the mirror
and see pretty staring back at me
but when you stare at me,
all you see is pussy.
i think you need glasses maybe,
bifocals so you can experience more than one type of sight,
so you can really see clearly that my heart is light,
my mind is bright,
and that i am too full of treasures
to only be desired
at night.

Close Call

i live a life of close calls,
wondering if the line that connects me to this world
will one day get cut off.
i am a cat who falls far distances
but always lands on her feet.
each time my soles touch the ground,
something in my soul feels incomplete
and i can’t help but ask God,
“Why in the world did you save me?”
others in same situations or those less severe
had lives that ended too quickly,
became blurbs on the evening news,
so why am i still here?
i tear up to think of how careless i was and still am–
waking up in the nick of time as my car crosses the median,
doing 360s on I-95 during rush hour and surviving to breathe again,
learning i’m HIV-negative instead of positive again and again.
it doesn’t make sense
but my sight only rests on now and yesterday,
not knowing what the future holds for me.
i only know of lessons hard learned
and times i’ve been burned by mistakes
and ponder just what situation it will finally take
for my close-call life to be cut from God’s phone line
and what exactly will happen on that day
when this life is no longer mine.

Her Night

being alone let’s me
hear and see
things I never noticed
were there.
it’s kinda nice
being able to check in with me
and not think about others
for a while,
to feel stillness and my feet on the ground,
observe this life I thought was ugly and horrific
and somehow
see beauty,
to be somewhat
on the road to rediscovering me…
maybe she
is hiding in leaky roofs and buzzing insects
and noisy cars that pass by, or
maybe she is in a white night light
or the bluish purple sky.
i think
i have a chance of finding her
if i sit still enough and observe,
maybe i can feel her if I understand
that me is her
and her hurts
but she still lives
and her has been hustled and abused
but she still gives
and her wants to give up
but she is still here
with her feet on the ground,
observing the sights and sounds
of a night as beautiful as she
wishes she could be