By: Saadia Siddiqua

Pakistan and America 
Eastern and western
but they feel like the north and south poles
I’m immersed in the red silk dresses embroidered by hand and I’m in love with the ability to roam alone across this land
I’m submerged in the value of education before all but I’m also tangled in love and lust, where we all seem to stumble and fall
sometimes seen as arrogant if I don’t see god
sometimes seen as ignorant if I do believe
I like the modest clothing, for immodesty is a sin
But I also cherish the bumps and edges that dance across my dark, bare skin
naked or clothed, how about being both?
 It leaves me vulnerable
It isn’t a mood, these things I love, I love them all at once, although they oppose each other

A tug of war, but in my mind
A terrible decision one way, the other sublime
I’m pulling from both sides with all my might
but the rope doesn’t sway, not left nor right
And my hands are tearing apart trying to pull too tight
To find one easy side to stick with
Blistered and bleeding, my hands will soon collapse
But with time I built calluses, eventually I started to relax
Pakistan or America, I choose carefully, building my traits
Eventually I balance and can finally stay
On this tightrope, instead of falling astray
Fifty feet in the air without a harness
And I’m beautiful
my contradictions are the garnish
This rope is who I have become
A twist of my identity
A burn, a blister
Or a beautiful show
This mystery of mixed
Isn’t something we all get to know 
Hold on to this rope 
For an open mind is no surprise
For people who are tie