Turkish Delights

Author | Christopher Stolle

After This Gathering, You Walked Away

underneath your sun-drenched hijab,
I found an Arabian night begging
Scheherazade to finish her last story

your marzipan-colored skin melts
and reshapes love under my touch
an unraveling skyline for Gibran to mend

no one can hear you whisper what you know
about my fruitful prognostications—
prophesies to remain stuck in our throats

how I know who will reluctantly rescue us
but still destroy ancient omens without prejudice,
forcing us to draft new myths and fables

be honey to sweeten this bitter truth
be that unweathered keystone fossil to prove
love has always swelled in human bones

this love only we need to believe exists—
cherishing how it flows through this space
we carefully irrigated to nourish our fertility

we blame misunderstanding on cultural shifts—
faults that divide more than geography—
and we reconsider hand-me-down temptations

and you start singing this well-worn lullaby
my heart tries—and fails—to quickly translate
before you decide to rewrite its last verse

and extinguish our burgeoning couplet


About the Author | Christopher Stolle poetry has appeared most recently or is forthcoming in the Tipton Poetry JournalFlying IslandBranchesIndiana Voice JournalBlack ElephantThe Poetry CircusSmeuseThe Gambler1932 QuarterlyBrickplightMedusa’s Laugh Press, and Sheepshead Review. He works as an acquisitions and development editor for Penguin Random House, and he lives in Richmond, Indiana.