Genova (Are We Wired?) by Ata Zargarof

A row of potted plants in a deserted square. 

You said: This one is poisonous. 

This one is a weed. This one grows all over Hawaii. 

We played soccer with a little boy who was afraid of the ball. 

We ate breaded prawns by the pier,

a bottle of rosé sweating beside us. 

You emptied your glass into mine because the cigarettes were working. 

You said: You don’t know me. 

That night, our limbs tangled,

I kissed everywhere except your mouth, 

It’s like with my hands I was reading 

a book I’d lost when I was a boy—

over and over

delighting in the lines. 

You are easier to grieve. 

I’ll climb the heavenly ladder

one star at a time—I’ll sing your name. 

Maybe in my need I will smother you. 

You will say: I am water, 

not food. Wine, not bread. 

Blood, not sky.

Ata Zargarof is a writer of Iranian descent living in Vancouver, Canada. His work has appeared or is forthcoming in Crickets, Literally Stories, Braided Way Magazine and Microfiction Monday Magazine. You can follow his literary escapades at

Leave a Reply