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News reports state that the “Angel of Kobane,” Rehana, a teenage Kurdish fighter, a symbol of resistance against the Islamic State, has been beheaded by ISIS militants.

Home is where bodies lay down; the headless
corpse of Rehana, left in the dust. Home

is dust. Where is your skull? I want to bless
each part of you. Kiss your ruined lips. Comb

out your dark, undone hair. Your people say,
“Sehid na merin”/ “Martyrs never die;”

yet all the taps in the camps are dry, pray
there is water for all. Home is now sky

without rain. Home is now Kobane ablaze.
To go back home you need to be complete.

I will wash you. Just show me where your skull
was thrown. Like all dead, you’re lost in the haze.

Prayers are lies. We’ll say anything, sweetmeat,
for that taste: righteous, bittersweet, mournful.



As of this writing the Battle of Kobane was launched by Islamic State militants (ISIS) on September 16, 2014, in order to capture the town of Kobane (also known as Ayn al-Arab) in Syria. The phrase, “Sehid na merin” is Kurdish in origin.