First Letter from UrHere, a Woman Cave

Dear Kabtn Khawaga,

The unforgiveness that burdened me for decades almost killed me. Feeling like I had to prove myself worthy of your love and attention, to not be excluded from your life.

2015. Comprehension of your contempt for your first family. A vengeful storm brewed, wreaking havoc in my spirit. Spewing toxins like an oilfield, poisoning my environment. We three females of your first family were only discards in your poker hand. I wanted you to pay with the only currency that matters in your world. Cold, hard CA$H. Dollars earned by any means necessary. Your money is blood money, earned with the life of my sister and the shattering that created V. V. Protector of our mother, found guilty of loving and believing in you.

Dangled carrots, bloody turnips. You, Kabtn; dropping in and out of my life, on a whim. 2007. You realized I was no longer buying your lies and bankrupting myself in the process. You tried to drop back out when I returned to America after my visit to your family home in Alexandria, Egypt. I fight for my family, Kabtn. Your sister the Bulldog and your fourth wife the Diva hide you behind their skirts. You like to keep your harem stirred and fighting, it keeps them distracted while you do whatever floats your boat. In the days before my departure from your home in Alex, I felt the freeze as you retreated, turning colder. I watched in disbelief when you ” played” with Sunny the way you “played” with me. Diva was there the three times I witnessed it, but you were so brazen the last time…outside, in the ground floor flat’s garden. Under the window of the Atelier owned by Sadat’s family. The gates had bars and we were at the corner of two busy streets. People looked through those bars at the Khawaga married to his Alexandrian Diva. This time, I knew why. I found all I needed to know about you as the Familiar Stranger, the International Deadbeat Dad.

You are Kabtn Khawaga in my memoir. I am your Khawaga Kid. The daughter holding onto the grief of my dead family; I was destroying not only myself, but the lives of my loved ones. I end this letter with words that lead to healing for the health of my family. Please forgive me. I forgive you.

Word Games

Aswan in August

Boarding our felucca

To cruise the Nile

You point to a word

“What does that say?”

You ask. I reply

“Captain spelled Kabtn”

A good memory

Of a good day

The word game

A man once called Daddy

Played with his first daughter

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