My Mind: Read Warning Before Entering


Be careful asking me what I really think. You are asking for my view, but it will change yours.


What you hear will transform, elongate, air without revision,

My words, living beings, will develop their own opinion,


A harmless vine “yes I did the homework,” grows thorns: “and you should too instead of leeching off me.”

The light laugh with an “oh I don’t listen to music much,” transforms into a darker, despondent “I can’t tell you, you’ll judge my taste.”

Casual “thank you for worrying, I’m fine,” evolves into “I’m fine until someone stares at my hijab, until I see people calling for my death on TV, until I read comments on the news articles.”


But not all is somber in the unknown forest of my conscience,

My words, living beings, have moments of gloom and of radiance,


A nondescript stem “congratulations,” sprouts colorful flowers: “and I am so proud of your hard work and all you overcame.”

The polite phrase, “the tacos were really delicious,” translates with an additional “I can’t believe I’m eating without anxiety now.”

Offhand “you’re a good friend, you know,” flourishes into “thank you for listening, for staying, for always making me laugh.”


There will be a lot of memories, permanent like indelible ink,

But the truth is valuable, when it is pleasant and even when it stinks,


“Are you serious, you sure you wanna know what I actually think?”

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