April 13, 2016

Leila Chatti

MORNING

I take the last grapefruit from the bowl and hold it
to know its weight. The doctor told me
the tumor has grown, is now this size. In my hands,
it feels conquerable, rind giving in to the press
of my thumb, pliable and sweet. A miniature
dimpled sun. I cleave it open and begin
plucking out its seeds. Beside me, a waiting
cup, an empty bowl. I watch as they fill slowly,
cradle morning’s flush of light.

from Rattle #51, Spring 2016
Tribute to Feminist Poets

[download audio]

__________

Leila Chatti: “As a Tunisian-American, I am a member of two very different cultures, but between them there is one significant commonality: in both I am ‘less-than,’ because I am a woman. My body is legislated and objectified, taboo and covered. When I write poems about my body, it is a feminist act; I am declaring this body both important and mine.” (website)