The island of shattered dreams


The ebbs and flows

Cold winter winds blow

Across the oceanic world

No land to see, nor harbors to call

The loud silence of doomed souls

Black gulls take to air

Round and round they fly in evil circumambulations

No sound through truculent clouds

Of promised rain and storms

And what is left behind?

And what is forward for?

A requiem powers the sails

Sung soft and low

Come by night or day

By air or by sea

Come solo or in droves

But be warned that none leave

Your belongings packed before the journey was charted

With hopes and ounces of faith that were stored

Paper invocations floated back down from heaven

Have trailed here to be buried, amongst you

This place where God will never be

And no prophets or messiahs to set you free

Rank upon rank, file after file

Men with crosses to bear

Of mistakes and unfulfilled best intentions

Come hither friends and foes

A choir of unholy spirits rejoice

Usher to your new abode

Come by night or day

By air, by sea, or on knees

Beware though, that none leave

Because there is nowhere else to be

Welcome to you, friends

To the island of shattered dreams
















Rain on you


Of all the ways that lovers do

Dreams and thoughts of touching you

How I could turn into rain

And pour myself onto you

My gray clouds float to your presence

Steal sunlight from the sky, and prickle your skin with a frosty breeze

Ignite Goosebumps on your slender arms

A premonition of what’s to come

No I won’t pour, nor drown in a biblical deluge

A light drizzle would simply do

For the unrequited desires that I seek from you

Evanesce my being, I fall down to

I’m whole now in a million drops

Delicate like sparkling dew

My first splashes on your raven black hair

But you are still so unaware

Oh my paramour but there is more of me

So much more too of you

The first for any man, I rejoice in my descent

How a fall can be from one heaven to another

And drips of me on your forehead

Your turn your face above to see

The Cimmerian nebula that carry me

I slither down to your sultry cheeks

Fuchsia with surprise and elation

Smooth as polished marble

Of a temple made for a religion arcane

Known only to me

And sizzle in wicked delight

Trills to your lips

The warmth of your breath fleeting

Rapture so abundant

That is in rain

A peek of your pinkish tongue

Wanders out to seek a taste

A drop is captured in curve

And let slither back in its sepulcher

Inside you I float, running in your life blood

We are one

How I wish I could ebb through your veins

Like an addiction without cure

Drops of me all on you

Soak your clothes through and through

Your curves accentuate my lascivious fervors

As I caress you further

To the flats of your torso

I slither and crawl

Tickle and feather, my touches to arouse

Till your legs so neatly parted

Almost finished what has been started

I slide and slide lower still

To your thighs and knees

Shaped with such feline grace

Your ankles, till

Your feet and toes

So perfectly formed

The places they take you

But steps so far from me

So slowly I roll

To my final demise

Soaked now by grass beneath you

I am life now in another form

Fertile with your redolence

I await another turn in eternity

To love you again














THE DEPARTED             


Covered, closed and sealed

Fist after fist of moist sand

Laid to rest

The walk back now for the living

A drive to return to an empty abode

Wouldn’t it be so much better to also bury the memories behind

Carry on now i must, and still be near the places where we used to dwell

Incomplete, left to repeat a single wish

If only you had taken me with you

My eyes stray on the barren shelves

Where you kept your clothes

Residues of your perfume still linger in the air

The very scents that stirred my lusts for so long

Now make it so hard to breath

i must wake still, every morning and pretend to be alive

Though, i know i went in that grave much before you

What remains now is a quest

To seek answers for infinite questions that are left for me

All of them beginning with “why”

The finality of it all, this surcease

Becomes too much to bear

My heart beats on my chest like a hammer on a condemned wall

And when i can take no more, i fall to my knees and cry

Sob tears that rise from an abyss

Very deep inside

For the love lost to me

The warm embraces now cold as artic snow

The kisses owed but never collected

The words that i felt but left unsaid

Maybe you’re in a better place now

Better than this living, breathing hell

That caves in around me

Maybe you’re happy now

Or maybe, simply, this is what i deserved all along

So now that you’re with others i see

Everyone else but me

I’m taken back in that cemetery

To a cold dark corner, tranquil in perpetual shadow

Far away and sequestered

On a little piece of hallowed ground

Where broken hearts are buried

























Autumn  (Acrostic)



Under deciduous trees

That shed leaves like heavenly tears

Undone like strings

Memories flutter to the ground

Now all my seasons are cold


The beggar in the corner


You’d see me

If you looked close enough

Well enough

In the midst of the throng

Of teeming masses going about their daily mundanity

Like I go by mine

No, don’t blink your eyes

Yes it is me

In the ragged and torn clothes

And the bare cracked feet

The skeletal body wasted away in years of wait and expectation

Dry parched lips that can mumble prayers no more

Nor recite tales of love and devotion

I sit here and squander my days

Count gold coins I don’t have

Come back from places never been to

And make friends with people who don’t know me

Eat what is thrown my way

I sleep where I can lie

And I wake when I want

Though those thoughts of you

That can’t be buried deep enough

Return as djinns with every twilight to skin me alive

So I live every day, to die by hours

Gaze from the gazebos I had

And in them the shrubs

That bloomed in the dulcimer of our laughter

My tears now welled up that refuse to flow

The wrinkles etched on my face, a map of an Elysium

That banished me eons ago

The embraces and cuddles

Of children never born

To me

Thus I sit here

Every day, a cracked hour glass

Spending in repetition

One life that I ever lived

Now left to a slow torturous demise, and wonder

Was there ever a you and I?




Rizwan Saleem is a Banker based in Dubai UAE. The thoughts and expressions detailed in his works are of his various escapades suffered through life, and of the profound surprise of having survived long enough to pen them into wordsHis poems and prose have appeared in anthologies Twenty Seven Signs by Lady Chaos Press, Self Portrait Poetry Collection by Silver Birch Press, E fiction India, Scarlet leaf Publishing as well as Colors of Refuge.



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