Filled with Gaps
by Nour O. El Borno

A hole in my heart makes it whole again:
Two holes instead of one fill the stuffed
Corners with gaps.
It makes it easier for blood to run
Instead of no room for it to roam:
From a cell to another,
From a prison to the next.
It floats inside like a flat
Floating on a third floor
In a twenty-storey building
Full of stories, too.
One about loss, the other about finding
And a third missing as the person is gone as well.
The will of creating harmony between
My red cells and white ones
I find myself taking no side
As I have lost some inside
Due to the stuffed corners
Which were filled with gaps.
It’s not easy to survive
Nor is it easy to stay alive
Or live.
Survive; alive;
Live broadcast from the heart:
Run before there’s no place to hide.
Here are some tips to hear before
You go to the wild:
Wild animals can be shaped like pets;
So close to you and great at thefts;
So dear to your heart
And hurt you best.
Fear the squirrels not the bears
For bears can be seen: so slow, so big.
Yet the squirrels can run: so fast, so small.
Hide above a tree and you fall,
Behind it and you’re exposed,
Beneath it and you’re gone for good.
It’s good to stand before it and fight;
If then you end up beneath it,
You wouldn’t have left for nothing
Thus your grave will lift a legend
Not just a passing myth.
You will have lived and died
Not just died and once again died.


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Nour O. El Borno is a senior English literature student at the Islamic University of Gaza in Palestine. She has been writing English poetry since she was 11 years old. She won the first prize in a local poetry contest when she was 16 and few of her poems are published in a book Remember Us. She has always loved poetry and has always regarded it as a part of her identity.

IMAGE: “The Heart” (detail) by Henri Matisse (1943).