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layla in the garden

catchphrase wolf-whistles,
and black-eyed leering from
the undertaker's boy;

the scent of the turned earth,
tombstones and rot become
her focus, her sight.

she veils her eyes, slips
childhood's innocence
over her broken life.

she longs for brimstone,
eyes searching for respite
from the teary sky...

but nothing. She is left
with her dreams intact,
interred with a father's wish.

she grows old, tired of
running skin on stone,
lips pressed to letters.

in the darkness, devoid
of all, all but the ghosts
of an unbreakable silence,

she clutches desperately at
that most precious second
of grief.



© Marziya Mohammedali, 2001-2013