Or Were You Always Me?


When we were children,
you revealed yourself to me –
In the vacant lot next door,
between the dirt clods you
threw in my face, I saw your
fangs and horns beneath
a cherub’s lonely gaze.
I believed in you then.
The way you overleaped
the snake to make it atop
our playground slide first.
The way you spit as you
spoke, and taught me to
eat plastic grapes. The way
the watermelon seed sprouted
that vine from out your stomach.
The way you survived maggots,
earthquakes, and World War III.

I believe in you today:
the caretaker for the garden,
my father’s final resting place,
where he threw us into heaven
while we laughed and played.
It was so simple back then when
he broke my nose, and a tornado
carried me away to where the toads,
rats, and lizards roamed. Amid
sharks, we’ve found our freedom.
In waves, we were imprisoned by
the witch who marked us with
her nails, that blind witch who
set us free. There’s no freedom
in our world today. I’m bound
to you bound to her bound to me,
united by blood and ancestry…
That witch must know the truth.

Is it that I was always you?
Or were you always me?


For more of Israfel Sivad’s poems, please go to: amazon.com/author/israfel-sivad