Scenes of Abu Dhabi, UAE during the current COVID-19 pandemic.
This city unfolds along a watery spine. Small fishing hooks dip into the water from both sides, and white birds rest among the waves.
Before arriving in New York in that snow-full January, I had never really reconciled the “hyphens” of my own existence – born as an Indian citizen, I grew up entirely in the southern African capital of Botswana, eventually moving to Abu Dhabi for university at the age of 18. I knew I had grown up and formed a slow identity while straddling more than one culture, both of which I had not really learnt to accept or love, but just sit in, perplexed into a discomfiting stasis between them. Going to America has burst that still yolk of a bubble…
As she travels the winding road, the traveller pulls threads from her clothes and uses the dust under her fingernails to construct the unknown city in her palm before she gets there. She hides this model from her companion, ashamed of its size …
He pisses in the bushes
Tells me he loves me
I tell him I’m hungry …
at the mouth
of mina zayed, oozing
Whole Foods is the safest place on earth. What would the terrorists come for? The organic ice-cream? The dinky doughnuts, perhaps, were worth killing for. Imagine, a rainbow of kombucha and salad and bamboo leaf shampoo, with artisanal cheese for taste, shattering outwards, like the first sigh of relief after a breakup.