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Periphery

a record of mundane things that have stuck in my mind, and what they may mean.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Nightmare in ‘04

A lot full of cars—but all wrecked;
Mercedes and BMW’s and Blazers and Broncos
with flat wheels and broken glass and shards of something organic.

And we stopped there in our Camry. And the lot was covered—
not with snow as you may imagine on a January Eid,
but with the most sickening remains and wreckage.

And we walked out, trying to protect our Eid clothes, to the Masjid.
And the door was shot in. And we stood at the door. And no one would go in.

It would be provoking to them, if we prayed in our masjid. So in a hall nearby we congregated.

And as we gathered, all our gold and our silk and our embroidery hung on our skin. And our CK and our Este Lauder and our Gucci hung on our skin. But the things penetrated our minds and our souls, driving out whatever else may have been there.

And then we lined up for salah. And when the Imam spoke, we talked and giggled. And when the salah began, some enlightened wit turned on Beethoven's Fifth as a backdrop. And as we finished our salah, some postmodern youth blasted Eminem drowning out the Imam.

And we did salaams and wondered why all things were a haze.

2 Comments:

At 6:30 PM, Anonymous said...

what??

 
At 8:33 PM, Anonymous said...

hmm-- unlike the above poster, I think I understood you're poem. "Nightmare in '04" depicts, I think, an umma that is cluttered by the world and the "noise we've built around ourselves." and yet ironically we/they question each other as to why everything is so confusing (in a "haze").

I understand this in your poem. And I like the wording--especially "on a January Eid." Your depecition of worshipers feigning worship is scary--and true in many cases I have been in. But, for a reason I can't yet pin point, this poem does not inspire in me: (1) the mixture of consiousness at doing nothing or doing wrong and (2) motivation to do good and to change.

In short, I can understand your nightmare, but I can't FEEL it. I'm not scared. Even while I know its a nightmare you are writing about.

Your poem also reminds me of a Muslim high schooler describing where she thought she would be in 10 years (Lost in a tide of believers, drowning in our confusion, and taking quick breaths only in the contemplation of "On no soul does Allah Place a burden greater than it can bear.")
Perhaps sis, you ought to take a moment for quiet contemplation on that verse. =)

peace.

 

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