Prayer To Allah

Prayer To Allah

The softness of the tension of his skin

feeding on the earth

through layers of foreign concrete,

the pupil of his eye patient,

his soul crying with images, while wishing

to bring his family a better life, speaks.

He is sitting on the bench

at the bus stop–

hands together almost prayerfully–

with the promise of rain coming

faster than the bus.  It seemed,

looking into the distance,

feeling the wind start to blow

the first gentle drops.

He had no umbrella,

no outer coat–

just a shirt and himself.

Obviously, he thought

that was enough.

I could see him somewhere else–

a mosque in the center of the city

surrounded by people

who knew each other’s family

for generations,

walking by each other

in long cotton clothing

and veils.  Nodding, embracing,

the kissing of cheeks

in rain or shine,

just a moment before

being here, where

no one knows each other—anymore

or says hello at bus stops, but

even there things were not the same.

“How everyone pretends to have it together,

as if life can not unravel them—

like a ball of string

rolling across the floor—

with one swift push.”

He loved America, but

This he knew:

The apex of their arrogance

not feeling the edge

where even life’s face

can stare back at them—ugly—

or open doors

to existences

never given entry to,

sliding down hidden pathways

elaborately planned

inside a dream

held tight

under one’s skin

growing taunt and

loosing its pungency

like the earth

buried in concrete.

For him, this is how it was.

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