Manzano Mountain Review is an online New Mexico literary journal affiliated with UNM-Valencia.

Ghazal of the Half


by Robert Okaji

Singing virtues, she swings to the east, claims half,
accepts what's given, smiles, nods, names half.

What stone lies unturned in this bluest of graves?
Where love's darkest lancet intrudes, inflames half.

The beauty of intercession and the divided become
one. Pushing them into two piles, she blames half.

Incomplete, I ride the lost memory's pale vein,
as the motion of capture, of trickling, maims half.

You read the history of driftwood in its scars. 
"Never whole. Always," she exclaims, "half."

My other name is a hill in a windstorm of sleep.
Forever apart and uneven, just the surname's half.
Robert Okaji is a half-Japanese poet living in Texas. The author of five chapbooks, his work has appeared or is forthcoming in Vox Populi, North Dakota Quarterly, Underfoot Poetry and elsewhere.