The poetry of Sheikha A.

Desert Magnolia

Under a sheet of magnolias is a high tide –
fire on a strait. Deserts at night time
are grey where the heart turns a correct
shade of honest. Ironic how you chose
to keep the flower – ice on sand
because you always knew the rightness
about kindness. I floated like a swan
on grass, shallow and sociable, neglecting
the breeding season – your pedant. Do
you know of the hour when shrines
become graves, I have many confessions
and the need of a petal in my hands
from the longest-lived soil. I let your ghost
take me. Were you aware of how haunted
you were after the dream, you rose from
the water to where you escaped
walking to me, wet prints raining
my roots – desert of seeds.




Olive Nest*

There is no home, the floods have
swept back into their spillway;

whatever flat irons were meant
to hold the power of an angry god

in its rings, all of the metaphorical
praying, praising, chanting, humming –

the power of parched intestines –
all of the self-imposed frugality

dredge a shrunken stomach to the sky:
the rise of a lord of the swinging arrows

with a broken bough slung over; weak
is the smallness of the hole that holds

the entire coming of bloom from light
where olives will be rained on dead soil

and from them the head of a seedling
will grow tall into strong walls of fire

no water shall overpower; the feast of
closed mouths missing milk teeth –

the food of heaven on whitened tongue.

*First Published at Public Pool

Sheikha A. is from Pakistan and United Arab Emirates. Her work appears in over 100 literary venues, both print and online, including several anthologies by different presses. Recent publications include Poetry Repairs, New Mystics, Dreams and Nightmares, Auk Contraire, Waxing and Waning and elsewhere. More about her can be found at


  1. Sheikha A. ‘s poems gain a strange spiritual strength from her powerful use of language and her elegant images of lost worshipfulness. I especially like the lines, “where the heart turns a correct shade of honest” and “I floated like a swan on grass, shallow and sociable.”

    Liked by 1 person

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