Tuesday, February 07, 2017

Shahé Mankerian: Brioches in Beirut

The bakery crowd looted the last
of the loaves. A beggar child
driven by hunger ignored

the falling bombs; he sucked 
on rancid raisins stuck 
between his teeth. 

Pregnant Fatimah didn't mind 
the mold on the leftover crumbs; 
she devoured them 

as she crossed the checkpoint 
full of pungent militiamen. 
No one noticed the Druze 

cabdriver on fire. No one 
tasted the difference between glass 
shards and sugar beads 

piercing the bloated belly 
of brioches. A roach crawled 
into the barren oven. The broken 

baker sat on the curb 
and cried because he ran out 
of yeast, butter, and flour.

"Brioches in Beirut" was a runner-up in These Fragile Lilacs Poetry Journal, Volume II, issue II. 

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