Jan/Feb 2015 • Vol. XXXVII No. 1 Patricia Grodd Poetry PrizeJanuary 1, 2015 |

Open in the Spring

Runner-up 2014 Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize for Young Writers This morning I watched my mother unfurl like a cherry blossom. Her arms branched toward the ceiling, weaving into the air, coiling. Her back, arched like a bough, dripped satin bedsheets. Words piled beneath her bottom lip, pulled back in a yawn. Her teeth—white buds—wedged themselves between sunlight and her voice, raw honey— petals of Arabic swaying in the breeze. In the afternoon, she sat like a mangrove, her arms like roots submerged in cooking. Her knees bent like reeds in the Egyptian wind and rode the hardwood floors like leaves. I wish I thanked her for reaching into soil and watering down the world before my eyes, so like a banyan I'd be able to grow from it. This evening, I sit beneath my mothers feet. She is a date tree, arms spread wide and thin as the Nile. Al Janna Tihtal Al Aghdam Al Muhama'at. Heaven shadows itself in her footprints.

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Dalia Ahmed is a junior at Miami Arts Charter School attending the Creative Writing Program. She has won keys and medals in Scholastic’s Alliance for Young Artists and Writers and was chosen as a semifinalist for the National Student Poets Program. Her most recent work has appeared or is forthcoming in Postscript Literary Journal, the Best Young Writers 2013 publication, and Dog Eat Crow Magazine. She has also received first place for poetry in the Sierra Nevada College High School Writing Contest. Dalia lives in Miami, FL with a large Afro-Arab family, collections of colorful headscarves, and many bowls of hummus and pita bread.

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Runner-up 2014 Patricia Grodd Poetry Prize for Young Writers This morning I watched my mother unfurl like a cherry blossom. Her arms branched toward the ceiling, weaving into the air, […]

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