1st Draft SST9 Nafeesa Hamid

2 Jun

Apologies for the (very) late post. Was really struggling with this. Also, this is more prose than poetry at the moment. Sorry.

I’m thinking that the video will be shot as though someone is looking through the crack of a door, on to a stage.

A curtain separates man from boy. Father from son. Reality from innocence. Performer from audience. Rahel peels back the curtain as though opening eyes for the first time. One inch, two, likes the feel of it so holds on. Out on the stage it’s like a film premier. There is a woman with  ground, wet coffee hair curled cat-like over her shoulders, twisting down her back, perching at her waist. Rahel thinks maybe she’s a pop star. A big celebrity. She definitely has a lot of money. The audience love her, they shout and cheer and whoop on their grounded feet with “More, more, more!”. She pretends to walk away, and the audience are on their feet now their mouths gaping wide open with “more, more!”, their arms trying but failing to touch this divinity who has walked among them. The woman starts singing then, she sings like sugar straws dissolving on your tongue after the cheap, bolting shock of sour sinks right into your body, all the way to your finger tips. She pulls and thrusts at slinky hips, snaps her fingers and contorts her arms like a saamp-wala and eases the audience back into their seats as feet find their way back to cnter stage. There’s no light over her face so Rahel finds himself abseiling down her legs. Strong, long legs who know exactly what they’re doing. What are you doing Rahel? Why are you here Rahel? You should be making money for ama, Rahel. She needs you Rahel. You’re in trouble Rahel, big trouble. You’re poor and stupid and evil Rahel. That’s why Abu ran off. How could such an intelligent man be expected to put up with such a stupid son? Huh, Rahel? Rahel. Rahel. 

Her heels sparkle like Lahore on Eid. Rahel is not crying. Rahel is not crying. Is not crying. Crying. Her heels sparkle like Lahore on Eid, gems blinking without sequence, the heel on them so high Rahel expects her to stumble this way or that…any. Second. Now. She doesn’t though. They carry on flickering under his eye lids until the sparks turn into camera’s flashing at Rahel and the coffee-haired woman who will teach him how to strut and click and pull at the audience until they are shouting “More Rahel, More! Raheeeeel!”, until he is no longer poor or stupid or evil and Abu’s seen him on the TV and thinks “Gosh! My son is mine after all!”


Silence. Not silence. Definitely not that. People rustling, sipping at luke-warm cola’s, still laughing,snorting, still watching, waiting, wanting their show. There is not silence hanging in the air. But a loud, loud, deafening question mark hanging off the parting of Abu’s lips, like a tear that wants to coil its way back into socket, but instead hangs awkwardly at the edge of life, forever and ever, like a limp dick. His lips are just blocks of red now. Blurring lorries, oceans of red, and the more Rahel stares the redder everything around him becomes – this torrential downpour of glossy, Rouge Rimmel filling up all the cracks of Rahel’s life, forcing him to slip onto his arse and slide all way into the arms of this strange and beautiful woman who was wittier than the comedian Amer Waleed himself and more stylish than Sicha Faraz. This woman, with more power in the clicks of her fingers and the turn of her tongue than God Almighty himself. This woman who was also his Abu. Who is his Abu. Who is my Abu. Who is my Abu? Baba. Abu. Aba. God. Rahel. Ama. Glitter. Stage. Man. Woman. Boy. Son. Curtain.

One Response to “1st Draft SST9 Nafeesa Hamid”

  1. MouthyPoets June 3, 2015 at 10:47 am #

    Hey Nafeesa,

    Interested in your apology for it feeling more like Prose? Do you feel it is really important to push this into more of a poetry direction or does the form feel like it is fitting with the content for you? To be honest with you, this really could pass as a prose poem to me, it is so visual and works on a metaphorical and literal level and also you have used punctuation in the poem gives a sense of lineation in a very poetic way. Saying all this… I did struggle to follow all the characters and imagery at times and I wonder if adding line breaks and unit/stanza’s could help give me the space I need to follow that? Would be interested to know your thoughts on the form too though.

    I read your idea before this, are you planning on incorporating film, BSL and dance into this piece? I think that would be really interesting, and if so, will you be on stage whilst all this is happening and have you had any ideas of who you might want to work with?

    Just a few small things, the limp dick image felt very strong and different in contrast with all your other imagery – is that deliberate? It felt a bit shocking for the sake of it to me, not sure if landed.

    I really enjoyed the whole thing, but it would be really helpful if you could outline to me the characters in this piece and what is happening to them in the piece as I still feel a bit lost on this? Cannot wait to hear you read it as I feel I will get a lot more when I hear it from you.

    Hope this helps! Really excited about this piece.
    Debris 🙂

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