Khédija Gadhoum - mystique

Unity is power; without unity
women cannot fight for their rights anywhere.
Nawal El Saadawi


Firdaus cooked and prayed in
a cell where the window and door were tightly
shut the earth echoed of what lied ahead
it was an accident… was it not?

she could barely unpack the first time
she was kidnapped by men and bullets
grappling with hate under the naked sky
her body sieged crying out for comfort

she is an ode unvoiced and open-ended
free to do what she wants and
free not to do it…an illusion that floats away
waxed and waned her mystique but not her god.


Honor required large sums of money to protect it
HE said feeling miserable in the labyrinth of Eve
well-versed in religion rules he rules
fantasies never meant to fill too full

HE loved to wear and tear
love before love came to town
He loved to conquer with a brand
new dice bound to put a price on
a body she did not own

SHE replied between blinking and winking
do you prefer oranges or tangerines?…
he slipped a ten pound note between (her) fingers.
It was as if he had lifted a veil from (her)
eyes and (she) was seeing for the first time.
what actually happened is not what you think.