Fairouz Bsharat

They had God held so tightly by the neck his head rolled home and was picked up by my father
Who are they?
Those who take your God,
tie a noose around His neck,
and force fabric on your head.
You are alone in your own home.
Stuck fighting with your father.
Straying from salvation. The farther
you go, the closer you get to their
hollow hearts and empty homes.
Ask God
if He left your head
on the guillotine or a noose around your neck.
You’re standing neck-to-neck
with some faint figure called “father”
and hitting your heads
against a wall of bricks because there
you both can lose God
and hide the pieces away in separate homes.
Houses made of foam, head
back to where you came rushing in. Bare neck
birthed the way God
had intended for you. Only for a figment named “father”
to force you to cover it years later. They
think it’s all a scam anyway. After all, who required low bowed heads?
Even if you behead
a monster he’ll crawl back home.
He will rest there
And from the stump of his neck
his head will emerge. Counting curses on fingers spread further
apart so sins can slip in the crevices. No honor among men dismounting paths paved by God.
Pray with praises slipped between pleas and ask God,
“Am I bowed low enough?” with your head
pressed against the cold carpet. The threading done by a decimating danger called “Dad”.
A house once named “Home”
and yet your neck
hangs over the edge of the roof peering for more than ground from there.
Leave that house and go to God’s glorious home
and name it such from your tongue dispelling from your head newly stitched on your neck.
Let father rest farther away from you as it possibly can, and may it remain there.

Fairouz Bsharat is a Junior Literary Arts major at Appomattox Regional Governor's School for the Arts and Technology and the current Virginia Youth Poet Laureate for Chester! She has won first place in the Fledge National Fiction Competition, been named a young poet in the community by the poetry society of VA and has had her poetry published in Young Writers USA, Virginia Bards Central Review 2022, American High School Poets - May Flowers 2023 anthology, and in ASGARD. She has also seen first-hand how poetry affects the lives of people everywhere. Poetry helps people express themselves! Expression is the best way to avoid conflict. If one has words to cradle them, often their solace is always sought.

"Olive branch" by Nick Kenrick.. is licensed under CC BY 2.0. To view a copy of this license, visit https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/?ref=openverse.

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A magazine for teen writers—by teen writers. Under the Madness brings together student editors from across New Hampshire under the mentorship of the state poet laureate to focus on the experiences of teens from around the world. Whether you live in Berlin, NH, or Berlin, Germany—whether you wake up every day in Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North or South America—we’re interested in reading you!