Poems and Texts

from The Paper Camera by Youmna Chlala

Variations between
_____________________letter and sound
_____________________is released
from the back of the throat
force and muscle___spit and saliva and tongue against teeth.
The difference is a minute tongue induced difference

When they ask where you come from, tell them:
Don’t believe in origins. Authenticity died with Colonialism.

Find a worn Arabic phrase book, practice saying Ghorba.
a kind of home, outside of language

Ghorba: Gha is a fricative sound.

Even if your mouth is closed (you are a mouthpiece)

This poem originally appeared in Aster(ix) journal, Kitchen Table Translation summer 2017 issue.

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