Meet Hordad.

She always liked the fine hairs on her nape. Much like the widow in the village who needed to remarry, she would cock her head in different positions in order to examine her best self. The rusted mirror in the garden was her favourite place to do so. It would mean positioning herself in between the thorny planks of wood and the array of damp gardening tools in the corner behind the shed. She would close her eyes and envision the painful memory of prematurely releasing doves from the straw basket at her cousin’s wedding. She counted each dove that flew above her head and when it got to the last one she would open her eyes. Wherever she found herself standing was, on that day, the best place to stand in front of the rusted mirror.

It was pointed out by Nusret, her friend in secondary school that she has a definite line. They both left their tiffins at the foot of the school shed and ran into the girls’ toilets so she could see for herself. Upon careful examination, they concluded that she had hair nowhere else but her nape. Nusret asked her to check her neck but with sincere regret she tells Nusret she doesn’t have anything there.

She wasn’t very religious nor did she agree with following her own intuition, the age upon which this decision happened troubled her. But she would make her decisions with the help of whichever way her nape hairs would fall after it had rained. Like palm reading, she had noted down every possible way her hairs would rest after it had dried and would, with her own very sophisticated reasoning, attach meaning to each pattern. Her favourite time of year was the monsoon season. She always felt lost during dry season, so she would shower a lot. She knew it was not the same. She felt too in control when she showered.

She learnt the alchemy of soil from her mother, Amordad, who passed when she was 8. The closest she ever got to religion was when she would hear her mother hum to her plants before sunrise. As the sun rose her mum would hum a different tune that went like this; “hmm-hm-hm-m-‘m-hmm-hm-‘m.” It did not follow a natural melody. It sounded calculated and hummed with reason. She paused her hum whenever she would water her plants. It was on the eve of her 8th birthday when she noticed, from her bedroom window, that her mum was watering the pumpkins and in a break between two hums she examined the way the hairs on the pumpkin leaves fell. She thought it was her mum doing something special just for her birthday. When she asked the morning after, she was told – after being told off for being awake at such a time – that the hairs of a plant is the only thing that keeps in touch with the akaash. And as a woman who spends all her time with soil, she must ‘know what is happening with the skies and that is the only way for me.’

Amordad appreciated that her own mother was religious. Amordad was told she was ‘lucky’ to be named with the same type of calculation as her hum. Amordad was given to her as a name because, before she was born, her family lived a life of poverty and names have a way of coming to fruition. Amordad’s mother intended that she would provide them with fullness of heart, but she did not know that the whispers of the woman in labour are the ones that are most important. Her hidden intention was accepted and Amordad grew to provide fullness of the stomach. Her mother did not feel guilt for making her hidden intention known and for moving the stars to make her daughter a farmer.

Amordad decided to name her the same day her father passed away, three months before she was born. As a farmer she appreciated that all life came from akaash. On the day that her husband died she also appreciated that all life goes back to akaash. So she named her Hordad; “wholeness”. She made sure not to force the stars but only to guide them, so she only cried during her labour.

There was nothing neither whole nor godful about her.She liked to eat enough for two, when she changed her clothes she would strip completely and she did not want children. Her Uncle’s wife would tell Hordad to wear a vest and underwear when she walked in on her having a bath completely undressed. She said the devil enters the pores of a woman unabashed. When her mother passed, she had baths everyday for two hours at a time because her mum must know what’s happening with the skies and bathing was the closest to sky she was going to get. She would drink water excessively so her mother could know what’s happening inside her. Her Uncle and his wife thought she had lost her mind since her mother died. They did not listen much.

Meet Hordad.

The Two Hearts That Were Moved By Each Other

Simple face, simple speech,

only ever asked for simple things when she was asked-

“What would you like to do?” To do.

“It’s up to you.”

She sneaks out of her house to see the silent skies not knowing the night she’d chosen to glorify uncertainty was the same night the Absolute would fall into her world.

She’s wearing the silk blouse she wore that day when the man behind the counter stuttered nervously in her presence. She can taste the cold. She can feel her nipples numbing beneath the Chelsea blue. The moon lets her have this night to herself and slips behind the church roof.

The air is fresh enough to feel it fall asleep on the back of her neck.

Tiptoeing on the below-the-hip brick wall, she makes her way to the end of the street.

She halts as she starts to feel herself hollowing, the weight of the unseen falling to the bottom of her stomach. It starts off with a heavy blur in her right ear. A dulling white appears before her right eye. Her head cranes in the same direction. The absurdities are not enough of a warning for her sudden fall to the ground.  Winds rush to carry her coarse screams away so no one on the street can hear. This is a private affair. The screams keep coming for it is now her heart’s turn to shift to the right.

She lies on her stomach, breathless, biting on her gum, her left ear pressed against the ground, waiting for the heart to end its stir.

Through the dizzying pain she sees a figure standing on a street, on the right off of her own.  She blinks once very carefully to let her eyes adjust to what can be seen.  He wore a black woollen coat. The shoulders fit him perfectly; a sign that he may have searched for it. The wool between his shoulders glazes over the dip in his back and she is confused as to why this is her first point of attention. From the way he is standing she is assured that everything that touches him wants to be touched back. She confirms within herself that he did not search for it, it just fits him well.

“What would it be like to be made of wool?”

His head is tilted upwards ever so slightly, waiting- disciplining the elements to stop and quieten.  In the church yard the oak tree apologetically stops its rustling. Street lamps subdue their saturated oranges. The moon remains hidden; with ardour and embarrassment it understands one should not be witnessing such an intimate affair. The only source of light to fall upon the figure is the colour blue; the colour that was once waiting to be discovered. Now, in this very moment, Blue shows itself, unveils and sinks into each available pore in all its deepest shades. There is a silence upon every sense. Fearful of breaking that silence, a wave of wind rushes in to catch his attention. It unloads the impatient screams of the girl lying on the street.

It was if he was waiting for this very moment; for his world to start blinking heavier. For his world to just about slip into deep sleep. And for it to then be awakened by the sound of need.

She sees him move. ‘He moves,’ she thinks. He turns his head to his left walks towards the figure on the ground. The Blue crawls into the lines beneath his eyes, making his expression hard for The Girl on The Floor to see. He keeps on walking. Blue crawls further, now into his eyes and in a jealous frenzy for attention freefalls onto his right cheek. She can hear his walk. He walks quicker until he hits a glassy new air outside of his atmosphere. He can hear breaths other than his own. He can hear her breathing.

He struggles to take in air. “Don’t sigh,” she says. A laugh splutters out of his mouth as he reassures her he’s not sighing.

“I can’t breathe.”

“Neither can I.” His legs buckle and his back bends backwards until it reaches the ground where she lies. His eyes are closed and his jaw is clenched.

“This was always meant to happen, wasn’t it? This is what you were waiting for?”

“Yes. I was waiting for you.”

His stomach concaves as the first stage of the hollowing begins. As if preparing himself for this very moment, he reached out and held her hand knowing that it was his turn for his heart to fleet to the right. She moved closer to him. His hand did not feel like the hand of a stranger. His hand felt like it should have always been there. She did not question what was happening. He said he was waiting for her – and that was enough.  With his eyes closed, he yells in pain and tightens his grip around her hand. She can hear his teeth grinding against each other. Still lying on her front, she moves closer to him until they touch. Her head is now resting near his shoulder. She counts the cold breaths coming from his mouth.

“It’ll be over soon.”

Both hearts have ended their move and are now still. Both hearts have been moved. They both lay on the ground, arms by their side, one hand in each other’s, in front of the church yard at the end of her street. The moon knows it can come out now, but it still lets them have their moment in private.

The Two Hearts That Were Moved By Each Other


I saw the sky in 3D. The dual carriageway taught me that I want to travel. Well not so much taught. It told me I want to travel at night. It told me not to sleep.

I was driven onto one very long straight road all the way to Ipswich. I visited family, the type you grow up with and then during annual visits you all speak of how you wish you never grew. That type of family. We ate. We smiled through awkward silences. We felt a deep regret when we asked each other questions we should know the answer to. And then we parted ways. We were all walking towards our cars and in one moment we were connected. We all looked up at the sky at the same time and saw in it our own very different reasons to drive home.

On my way home at 2am there were no street lights on. There was just the dim light coming from the front of the car. I had to sit in the back of a two seater, wedged in the middle of two people. I let my head fall back and I got to see what we were all engulfed in. The night sky. I didn’t consider myself small under this blue blanket. I was a grown woman clutching onto a blankie. It was brimming with stars. They were moving and our car was still. My neck was starting to hurt but I was fixed on the formations. I saw three shooting stars. And I’m almost certain they shot across whenever I opened my eyes after closing them for a few sleepy seconds. It was like the shooting stars were reminding me beauty cannot be found when I’m asleep. Wake up and witness nature dancing. Wake up and listen to the layers above you. The soft vibration from the engine was creating a buzz that lulled me into security.

The stars were falling and then with great speed stopped to be suspended. Stars were breathing. Formations were speaking. Greek gods were watching. Lovers were swinging from crystal to crystal. I love my city but that won’t stop me from walking miles to witness a moody sky adorned with diamonds it inherited from its mother.

I reached home and looked up before I stepped inside the house. It just wasn’t the same. But after a long time of feeling a heaviness on my chest I was going to sleep with a clear breath.


The Moon & I

I’m feeling nostalgic over moments that happened a month ago.

I remember listening to the moon creak slowly down his angle. Arthritis got him moving slower.

‘Tell me tales of the old’, I asked the moon and the stars. They gave me a little inspiration and I thank them for their stories. I may have departed them by belittling the sky. I told her she’d be absolutely nothing if it weren’t for them. Who would look into an empty sky and dream of lives they wished they believe they could live?

I did this every night for a very long time because I was always static during the day and I found it hard to see past the computer screen and all it’s information.

So, every night I met with the moon and it would project an image of itself chasing the sun. A little narcissistic but I liked knowing the moon knew what he wanted to do with his life. He would show me all the lovely people that spoke with him about the freedom they longed for (I admit I got rather jealous when i saw that loads of girls spoke to him). At twilight I’d say good night.

One night, I was on my way to the moon and Orion’s Belt coughed stardust in my face. I gave him a good telling off and a little advice to take some honey and lemon. Apparently, Orion was trying to get my attention and had something urgent to tell me. He said that the moon is a hypocrite and I should not fall for his trap. I was instantly taken aback. He asked me if I wished I was as beautiful and as happy as the moon. I said yes. He asked me if I wished I was as free and light as the moon. I said yes. He asked me if I knew what the moon’s job is. Job? What job? He does these things because he loves to. Orion’s Belt told me the moon has got a 9-5 job and he’s stuck in it forever and he has no choice but to stick to it. His job is to make people feel free.

At exactly ten past eleven the moon came. I never realised it had a schedule. I felt very betrayed by the moon and told him everything Orion’s Belt told me. He didn’t even deny it. I couldn’t believe that all those nights I was looking at life’s 9-5 job to think I was unshackling from my predestined plan.

The moon and I don’t talk anymore. Ever since that talk with Orion’s Belt I’ve felt a bit weird speaking to the stars.

The moon can’t derail and neither can I. And now I’m always sleeping on time and waking up on time.

The Moon & I

Cast Away

Washed up on a beach, she breached the strongest current
She looks down at her hand-me-down fibres, soaked in luminosity
The Northern Star cheers her on as she stumbles to her feet
With electricity in her eyes, she charges ferociously at Polarity

For all her life, she believed the world turns
Because North only ever wanted to see South.

Cast Away