Ahmad Al-Khatat

Ahmad Al-Khatat was born in Baghdad, Iraq. His work has appeared in print and online journals globally. He has poems translated into several languages such as Farsi, Chinses, Spanish, Albanian, Romanian. He has published some poetry chapbooks, and a collection of short stories. He has been nominated for Best of the Net 2019 and was also nominated for the Pushcart Price 2020.

The Finest Cigarette 

On the first day of the new year, 
 I light the finest cigarette up and 
sip a cup of black coffee by myself, 
then write about hope on the typewriter.

The night born with stars and torn them 
The children of world recall their little pets 
While the children of Iraq & Syria remember
the dates of their sibling’s death in the war.

I no longer run after the birds and butterflies
My days are low, like the tears of a dying angel
My life is no longer delightful and brief  
Even love has been eliminated from my universe.

No one seems to care about my flying wings
Everyone is celebrating the night we shattered 
The wooden floor sustained your bitterness tears
This oppression made me an alcoholic and hopeless.

Another cigarette, another bottle of Russian whiskey 
Another great rhythm and blues to listen to alone 
Waiting for the time, and walk missing from the pub
Destiny undresses my flesh and leaves me as rotten skulls.

The Song of Life

A song you’d be thrilled to hear, 
with eyes sharing their sorrows 
to the nightingale 
a grief’s mouthpiece takes me 
to innumerable nostalgia
We hear the lyrics of the song, 
as clothes become wet from 
sobbing to the morning daylight, 
not moonless nights...

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