Plumb the depths of language with the Somali-American poet Ladan Osman.
“Words We Lost in the Water”
If Somali hail fell from the sky, it would be cardamom.
Sidewalks would release its scent under our heels, we would fill
burlap bags with it, odd grains of rice mingling in our tea.
There my father is the Lion of God
and not a man who talks about position,
not a man who remembers position.
There, lips smile for love
and hope sounds like the English need:
don’t piss on my need, we say.
Trouble falls, a rock
down the narrow well of the throat.
Chest and bullet are twins
separated by a handsome jaw, a beauty mark.
There my brother is Victorious
and not the odd grain in the sieve of my father’s heart.