The Mind Block & The Dissociative American Dream

The Mind Block

  1. There are parts of me I have not buried because everything you bury comes out alive, eventually.
  2. There are words I’ve read that open something within me. Words that turn my mouth into a circle. Words.
    And my lips become a triangle gape.
  3. I am writing now because I shouldn’t be writing. I refuse to bleed and become a performance.
  4. I walk in deep greens and wet soil and call it growth.
  5. I sit in lazy afternoons against white walls. Watch the sun tickle my skin and call it warmth.
  6. I scribble in notebooks and in my mind with headphones on and sink into deep sounds and forget my
    name.
  7. I don’t think of you or the loss or egos. I don’t think of you at all.
  8. I know nothing, or no one, except that today will end, work will end and I will come home to my mother
    after today’s walk and I pray and thank God and walk in another invisible line.
  9. There are parts of me I have not buried because I wear everything on my body. Once, I looked into the
    mirror and lost my face.

The Dissociative American Dream

when i came to america
i stood on the perfect sidewalk
and lifted my head to the sky
so blue, so blue, so blue
a mirage, i tell myself it’s a mirage
i tell Mama this isn’t the same sky

when i came to america
i stared at the neighbor’s house
pasted on carpeted grass
each house is a dollhouse with no one inside.

“We can’t plant lemon trees here, Khalto
The contractor chooses the plants.”

when someone asks me about when i came to america
i tell them that i climbed into a painting
and was the only thing that breathes


Lina Abdul-Samad is a Palestinian-American public health research assistant. Her work has appeared in This Week in Palestine and MuslimGirl among others.  When she’s not daydreaming, she is writing in a notebook or on her blog: Lina’s Thoughts and Words.