Sidrah Zubair

Sidrah Zubair

I’m with child

I made a baby out of dried
rose petal powder
and fuller’s earth, all on my own

I name it inqilab even though
I know there will be no new
revolutions happening soon

this baby is a bit annoying
because it keeps melting
at night, making oily messes

I keep shaping its body into new
creations like a swan-dragon
hybrid, adorable but menacing

my grandmother comes back
from her grave to ask me “are you
feeding it properly”

I give it chamomile milk for breakfast
and mashed edamame with honey
for dinner, followed by ginger tea

it smacks its salivating lips and says
“thank you” – I blaze softly with
pride, commending my parenting

it has apricot eyes and a soft,
cushion head which smells like
lemon oil mixed with bergamot

this baby doesn’t poop
but likes to spit out
little purple gloop every morning

I collect the sticky balls and put
them in a glass jar which sits
proudly on my study desk

the baby knows when
I am sad so it sings upbeat
covers of my favourite songs

we dance in my garden
its head bobbing funnily
as I lift it up and down

my friend calls me and says
“congratulations! who’s the
father?” to which I throw

my phone into the recycling bin
kill the carrier pigeons
and destroy my letterbox

to remove any chances
of another fat bearded man
in a stained white shalwar kameez

with small red eyes and thorn
hands who tries to come
and take unsuspecting children away

SIDRAH ZUBAIR completed her MA in Creative Writing from Durham and her BA from Goldsmiths. She has previously been published in ZARF Poetry, PERVERSE, and Screaming Into a Horse’s Mouth. She lives and works in London.