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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 19: 15 Aug. 2023
Haibun: 119 words
By Farah Ali



I have too many teeth, a militia of calcium and pulp infringing on the ones that belong. Diagnosed with hyperdontia, I undergo an operation to remove the supernumerary menace. Recovering at home, in pain, vomiting from the general anesthetic, I grip a bowl with shaking hands. The oral surgeon assures I can return to school soon, but for now blood is pouring out of my newly uncrowded mouth. As my tongue explores this altered terrain, my mother enters the room. I look up, expectant. Her lips part: “You’re disgusting.” I nod. She is right. I am. Hugging stainless steel, I wait until she leaves, close my eyes, and bleed some more.

the unloved search
for a hearth

Farah Ali
Issue 19 (15 August 2023)

Based in the UK, Farah Ali writes fiction and poetry with a particular love for the short form. Nominated for the Touchstone Awards, she won First Place in the UHTS Fleeting Words Tanka Contest 2023. Her work has been published, and is forthcoming, in a variety of reputable online and print journals including contemporary haibun online, Drifting Sands Haibun, Akitsu Quarterly, Plum Tree Tavern, Right Hand Pointing, Modern Haiku, whiptail, Wales Haiku Journal, hedgerow, cattails, Cicada’s Cry, and Autumn Moon Haiku Journal.

Her supernatural Deerleap Hollow Series is available from Amazon, and she can be found on Twitter: [at] farahauthor

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