All women speak two languages:
the language of men
and the language of silent suffering.
Some women speak a third,
the language of queens.
They are marvelous
and they are my friends.

My friends give me poetry.
If it were not for them
I’d be a seamstress out of work.
They send me their dresses
and I sew together poems,
enormous sails for ocean journeys.

My marvelous friends, these women
who are elegant and fix engines,
who teach gynecology and literacy,
and work in jails and sing and sculpt
and paint the ninety-nine names,
who keep each other’s secrets
and pass on each other’s spirits
like small packets of leavening,

it is from you I fashion poetry.
I scoop up, in handfuls, glittering
sequins that fall from your bodies
as you fall in love, marry, divorce,
get custody, get cats, enter
supreme courts of justice,
argue with God.

You rescuers on galloping steeds
of the weak and the wounded–
Creatures of beauty and passion,
powerful workers in love–
you are the poems.
I am only your stenographer.
I am the hungry transcriber
of the conjuring recipes you hoard
in the chests of your great-grandmothers.

My marvelous friends–the women
of brilliance in my life,
who levitate my daughters,
you are a coat of many colors
in silk tie-dye so gossamer
it can be crumpled in one hand.
You houris, you mermaids, swimmers
in dangerous waters, defiers of sharks–

My marvelous friends,
thirsty Hagars and laughing Sarahs,
you eloquent radio Aishas,
Marys drinking the secret
milkshakes of heaven,
slinky Zuleikas of desire,
gay Walladas, Harriets
parting the sea, Esthers in the palace,
Penelopes of patient scheming,

you are the last hope of the shrinking women.
You are the last hand to the fallen knights
You are the only epics left in the world

Come with me, come with poetry
Jump on this wild chariot, hurry–

Mohja Kahf: The Marvelous Women (E-mails From Scheherazad)

(via hennnypotter)

983 notes


  1. diaphanousblack reblogged this from angryasiangirlsunited
  2. abookintheattic reblogged this from angryasiangirlsunited
  3. twohousesoftheholy reblogged this from callingtopeace
  4. fyzajohan reblogged this from angryasiangirlsunited
  5. huzzahphalaxinfor reblogged this from wombatcubes
  6. wombatcubes reblogged this from meloromantics
  7. justalabmouse reblogged this from megg33k
  8. imonfireeeeeee reblogged this from meloromantics
  9. meloromantics reblogged this from iangalager
  10. airanikidus reblogged this from miriamforster
  11. blue221b reblogged this from 3-2-1nicolas
  12. 3-2-1nicolas reblogged this from shatterdomescientist
  13. miriamforster reblogged this from officialziggystardust
  14. shatterdomescientist reblogged this from officialziggystardust
  15. radioactivebinaries reblogged this from officialziggystardust
  16. officialziggystardust reblogged this from blueeyesbigsurprise
  17. blueeyesbigsurprise reblogged this from operation-bagginshield
  18. glittertaire reblogged this from lupinely
  19. queenmaeb reblogged this from lupinely
  20. razzlellama reblogged this from playmyribcage
  21. whiteraven93 reblogged this from intheicyairofnight