Lameese Badr's "Q/A with my Therapist" features questions that start with how often she thinks about death but provides a response that doesn't connect directly. This is true for the entire poem. First question, then response. The emptiness in this poem comes from the space between sentences and the disconnect in understanding death as a form of leaving as well as a disconnect between life and death and between home and community or people.
This airy feature of her poetry occurs in many of the poems, through the use of spacing, line breaks, thought or pronunciation breaks and offers the sense the writer is trying to capture something that goes beyond the concrete ability to touch someone. It's how emotions such as love are dealt with as well as disorientation between events or between time.
The preface for the chapbook by Samiya Bashir discusses sandstorms called haboob's that sweep through Central Sudan. A look at recent Sudanese news by the United Nations, offers more insight into some of Lameese's poems, particularly "Alternate" that offers both a jubilant view of a protest but also the grief that violence that occurred related to it brings.
Two poems "Why We Couldn't Stay" and "After You Will Die at Twenty/ For Muzamil" offer clues to what life outside the home country offers, in terms of disconnection and in terms of giving up who you are.
The style used, of open space and of slipperyness, the movement of idea to idea from stanza to stanza and line to line is very contemporary and post-modern. It requires flexibility from the writer and reader to follow along a path that changes from time, place, idea, emotion but because they are contained in the space of the poem, it holds additional meaning that is connected. An example of this is shown in her poem "When the Man in the Uniform Knocks Three Times", "when it breaks me and i keep coming back for more when the maps you are". Here many questions arise, what can break someone, why would someone come back for more breakage, how a person can be a map, or place perhaps. The next line continues "drawing on my palm" which helps make sense of the maps questions but there the connection is formed between the two individuals and the process of making a map or being a map. This makes the poem much stronger by sharing meaning that goes beyond the words.
Throughout the chapbook, the sense of the poet offering love is a strength that goes beyond the other emotions of loss, grief, and change. It's very easy to read poetry and helps bridge the gap between Sudanese culture and other cultures. Find other Sudanese poets on Youtube, see below: