The Soup of Baghdad


A plate falls to the floor

this night, the door holds its knocks

silence broken by fear


Baba fingers the bowl for onions

his kubbeh has cooled

like blue veins beneath skin

when life dangles on the earlobe of war


The wild dogs of East Rashid bawl

their alarm, eyes dart

another silent goodbye husband to family


One last swallow of arak, liquid fire

for sanity’s sake, final drip of silence ambushed

forearms flex when Baba’s spoon falls

even the children drink tonight


Stacy Campbell lives in Hurst and teaches English
to special education students in Arlington.