This poem was written in the wake of Egyptian queer activist Sarah Hegazy’s suicide:


Translated by anonymous

Even those who—temporarily—survived
cling to their trauma
as they hear themselves cursed
as sorrow and frost assault their bones
in the midst of the whiteness
and the storm
standing without any dam

The chill of Canada is not a paradise for anyone
and the gentle home of Egypt
is not a home.

And there was no one else there, no one
with skin the color of wheat
taken from their fathers’ houses
to the nation’s prison cells

Yes, government, you swore to forgive everyone
everyone but them
you dragged kids from a concert filled with a thousand other kids
to nowhere

and the people’s poison created an unbalance
that forced this generation to accept the worst solution
and we longed for alienation

Life is so big
Yet still it’s smaller than a grave
there was a way
there was a way
there was

It was possible for all of us to live
without forcing strangers to escape in all directions
without making queer a crime
and (one) carries, alone, the failures of their people
and (one) wails like the slaughtered, and then
(one) bleeds without a helping hand
there was a way
there was

But, without reason, someone decided to hide it
just as, without reason, someone said
(when they decided to leave everything behind and emigrate)
“Fuck you all, faggots, go to hell”

So maybe they felt better when she died
when she left today
and they wished away the rest of her generation, tomorrow
and, after tomorrow, all those who thought
—just thought—
of praying for her
then they, the chosen few, would inherit the earth
leaving no room for those like