on loving and moving

it doesn’t matter how long you’re dating
or in a relationship with someone
when they ask you to help them move:
do it 

if you’re serious about a long-lasting partnership with this person,
don’t refuse or blow them off fake a cough, or a coma
call in sick from work if you must
cancel any other plans you have
with anyone else
it’s a mutually cooperative
experience that will
bring you both closer together

just make sure you don’t break their stuff
especially any mirrors

damn thing slipped out of my hands
and shattered into countless shards
resulting in a lucky number of years
of misfortune

you said you weren’t superstitious
that it wasn’t a big deal and
told me to just replace it

i still wish i didn’t think that i could

i still wish that i’d dropped to my knees
to a ground glittered in galaxy
looked each supernova in the eye
and saw lifetimes of glass-absence splinters
the forehead-kiss breadcrumbs
trying to follow the trail of you left behind
until i've reassembled every loaf
and sweet pastry in the bakery

i thought i could find another
at Walmart or IKEA
instead of having any idea
of a voice that sounds the way
sun rays glimmer across
teary oceans of joy
waves of wonder
rippling fingers across
the drops of your reflection

i wasn’t thinking
i didn’t know at the time that
your mouth was a crystal cavern
a diamond smile
of happy stardust words
a platinum personality
and a goldmine chest

maybe i didn’t really love you

love is the frame of
four-letter confinement
to corners
perception prison vision and finite
an empty space to be decorated
filled to appear greater
but you are beyond
aesthetic, ethereal, above
the kind of stuff Plato's
forms are made of
essence omnipresent in senses
that could only allow me
to experience you briefly
instead of only ever being in love with
watching my dreams die

i made a mistake:
smashed myself
into a carbon-copy cliché
of another fucking love poems
just like many other love poems
written over a lucky of number of years
about comparing broken heart misfortune to
an unknown amount of heavenly glimpses
into some semblance of the original
that fell apart
star by star

i don’t remember what
originality looks like
i don’t even know the difference
between losing a soulmate
and losing my grip
    (i should have gone to work that day.)


* Previously published in the poetry collection ‘bliss in die / unbinging the underglow’ from Swimming with Elephants Publications, released March 2018

bassam (they/them or xe/xim) is a national-award winning spoken word poet, proud auntie, and settler residing on the traditional territory of the Dish with One Spoon Wampum Belt Covenant (colonially known as the “Greater Toronto Area”). they are a member of the League of Canadian Poets, an executive board member with Spoken Word Canada, and has toured Turtle Island performing spoken word. a (gender)queer, Jewish person of Middle-Eastern descent and a longtime sufferer of body dysmorphia, bipolar and eating disorders, bassam believes in radical kindness as resistance to colonization, that there is no peace without justice, and that intersectionality is vital in the struggle against kyriarchy.