The Purple Straw

( this poem is inspired by a song a friend wrote, you can listen to it here)

What is your favourite animal?

A bird, I say.

It has wings and it can fly.

it is free.

You started calling me ‘Birdie’ since.

We exchanged rings made of purple straw.

The ones from the mango box drinks.

You said, now we’ll be together forever.

We fell over in giggles.

We were 5.

And we were free.

No one suspected that two 5 year-old girls could be up to no good.


You are up to no good.

My mother said to me, ten years later,

When I came home way past midnight,

Soaked to the bone from the rain,

smiling so brightly,

I swear it was daylight.

nothing could touch me that night,

Not mum nor the cross she held tight.

Because just before I got through the gate,

You kissed me.

I dropped the umbrella.

That’s how I got wet.

But that doesn’t matter.

I was invincible.

I was free.


Until days later,

When you tell me you are going away.

Covered in burqa,

You came out of the car.

Your tears flooding the pavement,

As you walk towards me,

I thought you are walking on water.

Your dad shouts from the driver seat.

Not one step closer!

The impact of your sudden stop,

Send my heart into recoil.

My mum, watching from behind the door,

Made me a straightjacket,

made from the bible.

If only I could stretch out my hand…

I could almost touch you.

But the world has built a jungle between us,

of prickly hate and massive judgement.

Don’t worry, Birdie.

We’ll always be together,

in here.

Underneath the black heavy cloak,

I see you clutching your red beating heart.

When your car speed off,

And the world close in,

I close my eyes,

and touch the purple straw around my finger.

As long as you’re with me,

I’ll always be free.


I imagine the sky,

And grew wings,

and fly.



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