Under the sun, we burnt.

Red sea,
Under the sun,
we burnt.
I chose to save my life,
but they knew,
they were my life.
Or at least,
they were the only truth I knew,
they have difficult names,
and bright faces,
that don’t allow me to lie.
We gathered the stones,
thrown at us,
and we built a castle.
I know them best,
and I write about them.
I’d gladly go to hell,
I know I will find them.

[ to Alaa, Malak, Rusol, Joudi, Lama, Lilia, Fatma and Sana. To Akram, Adnane, Iyed, Fares, Steven, Ahmed, Hossam, Najm, Khaldoun and Serage ]

Thilleli G.


Our house, is your house.

Placating my soul,
with the last cohiba,
I climb the stairs,
to see Saint Mary,
although dead,
she still sees right,
and says,
hate is a burden,
forgive the one that went wrong,
and open your heart, again,
till it explodes, again,
make some room,
for the light to enter.
She also said something else,
but I didn’t hear,
gave her a kiss on the head,
and sucked up my fear,
you passed right next to me,
and you dropped a flower,
I ran,
put my hand on your shoulder,
and you looked over with a smile,
it just reminded me that I’m alive.
Days after days,
I called you ‘home’,
I felt safe,
waiting for the winter to come,
We were in love,
blindly, as they say, but
you could see the wound on my hand,
so you showed me the path,
to the arab bath.
Girona, you are more beautiful than
I can accept.

Thilleli G.

Pianist in the dark

D minor.
You were playing “Sarabande”.
I watched your fingers running on the piano,
sometimes I think you have your mom’s hands.
sometimes I think you have your dad’s hands.
you are the only place where they are
still together.
Then you asked me to switch off the light,
saying that light is to be thrown in dark times
while tonight is not dark,
it is never fully dark when you are with someone you love.
So I switched off the light,
Souvenirs of honey lemon in my mouth
I wish you goodnight
and you quickly close your eyes,
as if the dreams,
were more beautiful than the current world
guess your eyes have seen a lot,
but still, you are giving without expecting,
just like the sun gives to the earth,

[ To Amel ]

Thilleli G.


… joliesse d’une nuit d’été,
aux portes de la cité,
de fleurs le sol fut jonché,
au bout de l’épée,
je lutte contre la petitesse,la médiocrité,
prosterne-toi à mes pieds,
car je suis ta liberté …
… la femme voilée,
perdue en Judée,
une servante dénudée,
à l’ombre de l’olivier,
au milieu du palais,
je justifie ton infidélité
– trompée- je justifie ton péché,
adore-moi, je suis ta liberté …
… à Gaza,
tu croyais m’éviter,
je suis sur le chemin de ta destinée,
l’avenir indéterminé,
de cette jeunesse frustrée,
chronique d’une fin annoncée,
je t’envoûte, moi ta liberté …

Thilleli G.

Because they don’t understand

Hausa tongue,
Maafe burning your throat,
you wanted to play soccer
but they told you that,
Your shadow, barefoot,
wants to meet you in a cotton field.
Black, they said.

Reading from right to left,
wisely thanking God for bread,
while the fake ones were on the news
They told Julie, Marie and Jean,
to give up on you.
Muslim, they said.

Walking on water,
not to impress people,
just a pursuit of hope,
You are too many,
a sin in every breath,
we can’t.
Refugee, they said.

And you? You are not even a man.
Soft sex,
second sex.
because there is no equality,
you’ll seek superiority,
they will call you crazy.
Woman, they said.

But God,
Aren’t you just a masterpiece,
that no one understands ?

Thilleli G.

Truth from the land of chaos

My head on your chest,
I could hear your heart,
hear the depth of your soul,
a love song,
that would stop my world.

Then one day,
there was no sound, no heart,
just an unbearable void,
that I wanted to fill,
I looked everywhere, in vain.

But, in the silence I found,
the smile, the smell,
the laughter and some other tales.
It made my world,
spin, swirl, again.

I guess love,
is like water,
carries life and death,
but still finds its way,
through any land.

[ to Mom ]

Thilleli G.

Letter to my sister

Dead city,
castle of dust by the sea,
where slaves,
dig their graves,
there was a girl,
who wanted to be more than a caged pearl,
she wanted love,
she wanted what’s above,
she wanted to be mature,
she wanted to discover nature,
she wanted knowledge,
she wanted an allegiance to pledge,
and as she always had attitude,
she decided to ellude,
from the dull life,
from the dream that wouldn’t arrive,
if she didn’t dare,
to disturb the ignorance that people share.
She crossed the holy water,
she became painter,
a pianist,
an artist,
she was happy,
she did find her almighty,
but pity brought her back to earth,
suffering was always giving birth,
evil ruling alone,
old people drinking in a bar of stone,
one last time,
with the remaining dime.
when you look through day and night,
everything is so bright,
so what is this enemy,
that we cannot see ?
helping them ? of course she wanted to,
but she doesn’t know what to do,
I wish I was by her side,
and with pride,
show her the light she carries,
in her wounds and injuries.
I wish I could,
and I think I should,
tell her that when it is all dark,
her eyes still spark.

Thilleli G.

What I told the wind

I am not jealous,

of what is previous,

come with a rose scent,

the hundred letters I sent.

come with your french girls,

brown nice curls.

come with the woman you caress,

the beauty you witness.

come with the last beer,

but let me tell you my dear,

we shall always be alone,

you shall always tell me the story of the one gone.

Thilleli G.

God’s architect

I heard that you started dating a guy,
a bearded one who speaks catalan,
he tells you about faith,
and it makes your heart melt,
he held your hand and stood,
you followed and gave a look,
you got it, he’s God’s architect,
making the edges look perfect,
he showed you his story,
about nativity, passion and glory,
he drew the walls as a jungle,
in the middle, Jesus’ struggle,
above the savior,
a golden halo for the creator,
then he did something awesome,
a tower for each apostle,
but they were more then eight,
so the sun went and it got late,
not to make you mama angry,
you said you are in a hurry,
he knew a way by the Rambla,
a sweet little taste of Barcelona.


Thilleli G.

white is a beautiful color

You’ve been hurt and had to man up,
like any girl who wants to grow up.
You don’t trust men, you don’t let them explain,
but between heaven and hell, we’ll meet again.
You keep treating me harshly,
but I love you blindly.
There is a party at the beach,
Maybe we can share our tortured speech,
Can I offer you a drink ?
In this glass, let your beauty sink,
I am not gonna lie, I saw Paris and Bangkok,
But tonight, it is to you that I want to talk,
pretty white dress on your thighs,
matches the fire in your eyes.
Hold on, you have to go home, it’s midnight,
run and join the other sweet knight.
Sometimes I feel that I know you,
the childhood memories that you drew,
Some things I can’t forget,
some things I like the older I get.
and suddenly everything seems strange,
this melody that you endlessly rearrange,
as the sky starts crying,
God’s call starts rising.
When the silence falls back,
you are all in black,
trying to reach the horizon,
trying to find a reason.
Then you turn around and there is a smile on your face,
that takes me from place to place,
I can smell the orange trees,
the tea and the shades that freeze.
a prose is written on my hand
“Algiers, forever my friend”.

Thilleli G.