by Jemma L. King

42% of the American public believe that Saddam Hussein was responsible for 9/11. *


Najem sits in the dirt.
His grief too new to find voice. It is growing
against the force of his fear
that when it happens
it will kill him.
His wife is a wailing dam.
Earlier, Nadia tapped at the showerhead,
Threw a joke at her sister before the


for water was culled
by the window smashing burst
of collapsing house dust.

The missile lodged in her chest, the missile gifted
in coloured scrawl
‘For Saddam’.


Jemma L. King
* Arundhati Roy, The Guardian, April 2nd 2003

Manoeuvres first appeared in ‘The Shape of a Forest’ (Parthian Books 2013). Reprinted by kind permission in Issue 1 of Bare Fiction Magazine in December 2013.

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