The Night We Ascended: Six Poems

Adib Arkan

5 min read

The Night You Ascended

love is a drug—
you’re the dealer, i’m the junkie
that night we smoked a hell amount of it
just the two of us, we be high as a kite
then we heard a siren from afar
cops are coming,
and we know for sure it’s going after us

so you packed the drugs; love,
you packed it in a bag
i asked what are you gonna do?
i’ll go up there,
you said as you ran to the rooftop
so when the police
finally arrived at our doorstep
we already stood at the rooftop,
your arms stretched wide
suddenly you started to float
ascended to the dark skies
it’s like an UFO sucked the hell out of you
there’s no waving; no goodbye or anything
you vanished into the atmosphere real quick
kinda weird, but there’s just one thing
i don’t understand:
why did you leave me here all alone? 

police won’t believe this story
when i told them about it
so they keep torturing me
asking me about your hideout
i’m just as clueless as you are, i replied
then a punch thrown
a death sentence given
they accused me for hiding you,
but what the fuck do i know?

i keep dreaming of you
when i’m alone in my cell
that one day you might descend
from the dark skies
and save me from this rotten place
and all the tortures
i’m waiting here patiently
as i still try to grasp the reality
of not having you
and our drugs in the morning


Electric Guillotine

Don’t ever expect our dumb President to hear us,
he can’t even tell whether he’s walking on the mud
or in the pool of his people’s blood. 

Let’s just show him what we got in our hands.
Let’s just invade his palace tonight.
Kill them all. Execute him under the moonlight. 

Before that, watch out for the cry of the stomach
of your starving neighbor.
Don’t let the lights die out in their house.
Check everything, everyone you know. 

After all set, here’s the plan:
One. Kill every cop that stands in our way.
Two. Lock the palace, every entrance and the exit.
Three. Bring the electric guillotine into the field.
Four. Load our guns, and pray to the moon:

           We long for no countries and border
           We long to live without a master.

Channel our most vicious anger.
They tortured us yesterday,
so don’t hesitate to show them the hell today.
Pandemic may not come to an end with all of this,
but we can always choose how we want to live
and how’s the vision of the new world we imagined.

Lastly, we’ll mummify Mr. President’s head.
Put it on the top of a monument
right in the middle of the city.
It would be there as a reminder for everyone
what would you end up if you fuck with the civil.



Happiness at night,
   doesn’t mean a thing
When you woke up with emptiness
   the next morning. 

But now you’re a mess,
   a perfect mess, to be honest.
A river of Hennessy
   flows in your blood.
She would not clean this mess,
   as now she needs a rest. 

I let you fall apart,
   and broke into pieces.
In the mouth of the toilet,
   you puke aloud and cried. 

Staring at the ceiling,
   clearly i heard your question:
“Why god let me do this?
   He let me fall again and again.”

But it wasn’t god, it was you,
   and tomorrow will come in a minute. 

I hope you’ll make it through.
   Whatever happens, be tough. 

And never seek solace from what could kill you. 


I Believe in Existentialism After I Hit
Sartre in His Head with a Liquor Bottle

the government has called for a war
every man in town has packed their bag
but i don’t wanna go, my wife beg me so
and i’d rather be in home with her
lifting groceries washing dishes
taking her to a fancy movie theater
kids curled around bed in the morning
i’d rather die at home—but government won’t listen
they offered jail time for all good people
who just wanted to live their life unbothered.

so i went out tonight to contemplate on things
i don’t believe in god, only in good liquor
i took a train to sophisticated bar in uptown paris
where all intellectuals sit around and drunk-writing
i saw sartre, girls giggled around him, he’s filthy
i can never understand how beauvoir liked him
but my wife said that they’re both psychos
so why should i give a fuck about them at all?
i should’ve been busy thinking about tomorrow
should i go to war or hiding somewhere in town
while i went deep in my thoughts i heard footsteps
i look at behind, it’s sartre, drunk-walking to the bar
then he took a seat beside me, there he calmly sit
and ordered some more expensive alcohol
as this liquor in my stomach started to take a toll. 

out of nowhere, the philosopher asked me:
what happened?  boy, you look awful and tired!
i said i had difficult choices of going to war or not
then my nose caught a strong smell of merlot
as he opened his mouth and spat out his words:

shine a light into a room inside your soul
the meaning lies in around your existence
and all your decision, no matter big or small
ask your deepest heart—not the world!—to decide it
after all it would be your own unique journey

anger burst out in my blood, covered my system
this so called intellectual don’t know shit
about life, ’bout people like us, not even a bit
but has the audacity to preach me with his bullshit. 

it only took few seconds until i decided
to hit his head hard with my empty bottle of liquor:

bug! prang!—glass shards scattered around the bar

and right when he fell and turned unconscious
with pool of blood formed beneath the floor
i felt enlightened—i know i had to go to the war
i can’t explain how, but i just know now,
is this what he called existentialism?
is there a concept called existential burst
in his books or essays? what did i just experience?
maybe he was right and i was just too careless
to digest his train of thoughts, i’m not really sure,
in confusion i asked the bartender for a few more shots of liquor. 



it was the last day of october
that we puked together
you threw up a blue vomit
and i threw up a water-like fluid
i grabbed a black vinyl on my desk, it’s Blonde
turned it up so loud on Nights
so neighbors wouldn’t hear the bed creaked
i was about to feel a near-death experience
when you said it’s all over
we spaced out, yet i remembered it vividly

i found myself alone in the morning
dressed up real quick, i ran into the streets
i was looking for you but it’s too crowded
the cars were already lined up and they blocked me
dozens of human and i hit one while i ran
he fell plus i kicked his head
it was all his fault, why the fuck he stood in my way?
despite all that. . . i accept the thoughts of you leaving
i’d leave it up to mother earth to bring you back to my crib

it was your smell all over as i entered back in
i sat alone in bed i nearly cried
till suddenly i heard someone knock three times
i opened the door; it was the man i kicked
he pulled a revolver from his shirt and fired—bang bang!
i vomited blood; i threw up my heart also
it was the first of november that i puked alone


The Night I Ascended

the sounds of the drum marching
the inner city lit up in pieces
we burned the bridge between all those whatifs

you dim the lights and vanished
the old world has torn down abruptly
it blinded me, didn’t see it coming
here you left me all alone and wandering

i puked blood, painted the town red with vomit
my head nod when the fall came with a strong wind
my eardrums heard a knock three times
i opened and saw you, but the fire gone still

i greeted but i failed to feel
the moon rose as we cut our hands and bleed

the towns cried, the water was all red
space between faith and filth
we fill it with void
we bow to the numbness like a devoted son
you think this was all yours but no, it was ours
i just don’t think that you will never ever know

i ran to the rooftop and stretched my arms
said my mantra quick, ascended to the dark
i looked down, i heard all your prayers
you killed me there and you killed me here
but the nightmare has gone afar with all the fear

i dim the lights and vanished
i greeted but you failed to feel
the moon rose as you cut your hands and bleed




all poems here written by me in span of eight months throughout 2021. the oldest is Puke, i wrote that piece in february. the most recent is I Believe In Existentialism. . . which i wrote back in october. if you enjoy this anthology, feel free to follow me on ig @dibarrka.

Adib Arkan

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