Midnight Baths

An indigo sky pours moonbeams
over my naked body.

I soak in midnight baths,
avoid curious stares at my full breasts,
my desert dune hips, my olive skin.

The Mediterranean Sea in my bones
ripples as an unexpected body
sinks in the hot spring.
I glance at the folded skin.
Gomen nasai, a woman’s voice cracks.
She gets out quickly but I insist,
It’s okay. Please stay.

I squint and see
melted flesh grown hard with age,
the woman gives me a small smile.

Deep-green woods rise around us.
Autumn swirls the mist like leaves,
up and down,
back and forth.

I close my eyes
and beyond the trees,
whispering leaves,
Nagasaki weeps.

~ Sonia Saikaley

Sonia Saikaley has lived in Japan, where she taught English and found the solitude to write. She has also gotten lost in the alleys of Venice but found an amazing pizzeria. Now, in Ottawa, she finds herself surrounded by her big Lebanese family and amidst the chaos and joy, she writes. Her writing has been published in Still Point Arts Quarterly, Monday’s Poem, The Caterpillar Chronicles, Maple Tree Literary Supplement, the anthology Lavandería – A Mixed Load of Women, Wash, and Word, and other publications. She hopes someday to find a home for her poetry collection Turkish Delight, Montreal Winter.

Read more of Sonia Saikaley’s poetry:
The Island School
Foreigner’s Etiquette

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