Inspired by “Things I Know” by the—well, inspirational—poet Sandra Simonds, “Things I Know About Patrick Swayze” explores the Ghost, Little Mermaid, Ghost Dad, Friedrich Nietzsche connection that seems to have been rolling around in my brain since I was devastated by the sight of Ariel’s new legs. I don’t know what else to say about it other than how grateful I am it found the coolest lit home at Maudlin House. Read it here!
Author Archives: kshehadeh
“The Very Hungry Little Turtles” Published in The New Verse News
Published in The New Verse News, my poem “The Very Hungry Little Turtles” reflects on the span of one week surrounding the death of environmental activist and forest defender, Tortuguita, who was killed by police while defending an Atlanta-area forest from the development of a massive police training camp, dubbed “Cop City.” Read the poem here.
Since Tortuguita’s death, news outlets have detailed the results of their family’s private autopsy, suggesting that the activist was seated with hands raised at the time they were shot dead by police, casting further doubt on the official police narrative of the events.
“The Sugary Sweet Song” Published in The Fieldstone Review
A cute little musing on motherhood, family & the boy I call a cartoon mosquito, “The Sugary Sweet Song” was recently published in The Fieldstone Review, Issue 14. To read this and the rest of the sugar-themed issue, you can access The Fieldstone Review here.
Booza published by Consequence Forum
Booza is a short, creative nonfiction piece that reflects on a situation I found myself in on my first trip to Palestine, in the Occupied West Bank. I knew that I wanted to write about it for some time, but I wasn’t exactly sure how or what to say. When I started detailing the experience—we happened to be leaving an ice cream shop—the relation between the uniquely stretchy ice cream and the experience just jumped out at me.
One of the most interesting things to happen since this piece was published was in hearing stories from family about their own (much worse!) experiences. It’s interesting to think how I may have never heard these stories if I hadn’t written my own.
Booza is an essay that reflects on the impact of our experiences—those that push and stretch us—even in ways we may not want. Read Booza here at Consequence Forum.
be (my forever valentine) Published in Blue River Review
As part of their Valentine’s Special Issue, Blue River Review has published a fun little poem of mine, be (my forever valentine). A departure from many of my typical pieces, this poem is a light-hearted reflection of the all-encompassing nature of my own relationship with my partner & also happens to shout-out to some of my favorite things (Cheetos & daytime talk shows). Read be (my forever valentine) & all of the incredibly thoughtful pieces on Valentine’s Day at Blue River Review here.
“Was it Something I Said” featured by Prometheus Dreaming
The amazingly supportive and beautifully creative people at Prometheus Dreaming decided to breathe life into my spoken word poem, “Was it Something I Said,” and the result is truly earth-shattering. Featured as part of their monthly Thus Spake Prometheus (I knew all that college-age Nietzsche reading would come full circle one day) feature, the piece will be available during the entire month of February (2022) on their homepage and on their YouTube channel here.
Thank you to Prometheus Dreaming Editor, David van den Berg and voice actor Kerri Quinn for helping to bring this important piece into the world.
“What’s Not to Like” published in The Avenue
A critical view on Lady Liberty herself, “What’s Not to Like” appears in the latest issue of The Avenue. Purchase a copy here.
Lady ̶L̶i̶b̶e̶r̶t̶y̶ published in Inflections Magazine
Lady L̶i̶b̶e̶r̶t̶y̶ is a poem that reflects on the irony of the United States utilizing female figures as some of its greatest emblems symbolically, while at the same time eroding women’s rights in practice, particularly looking at the most recent Texas abortion ban. This piece also reflects on the hypocrisy of public figures remarking on the lack of women’s rights in Afghanistan, all while pushing a patriarchal agenda at home. This piece is published in Inflections Magazine’s 2021 Fall Quarter under Feminism and can be found here.
Pat Tillman, the American Hero Published in Mason Street
Published in the Fall 2021 Issue of Mason Street, “Pat Tillman, the American Hero” was written as a reflection on the documentary The Tillman Story and juxtaposes the attention and questions surrounding Tillman’s life and death with the disinterest about an Afghan man, who also tragically died alongside him. In the documentary, they refer simply to this man as “that Afghan fellow,” which really struck a chord for me. I found this to be a reflection of a greater societal failing, in which we do not see non-Westerners as fully realized people, with lives, families and meaningful stories in their own right. The full piece can be accessed at Mason Street here.
“The mom who is doing the best she can and the little boy who was left in the van” published in The BeZine
This piece is (unfortunately) based on a true story I saw on my local news a few years ago about a small boy who was accidentally left in his preschool van, while his mother (who was homeless) was at work in the early morning hours. This tragedy stuck with me because I could not get past how it was ultimately driven by hunger and poverty, and left this mother powerless in her efforts to do the best thing for her son.
This poem is published in the Fall 2021 Issue of The BeZine, which is centered on the theme of Social Justice and Hunger.