Saturday, January 10, 2015

Through the Beloved We Talk to God

“Where there is sorrow, there I dwell.
Where there is grief in the world, love has its dwelling.” 
― Mir Sayyid Manjhan Shattari Rajgiri, Madhumalati: An Indian Sufi Romance

The world is frightened tonight
of the last thing it said.

My daughter tries on her first Valentine’s dress.
When asked what color it is she said, “It’s the color of the galaxy.”
(We found the jewelry to match on the moon.)

I read tonight about the Muslim man who when the extremists
took over the kosher grocery store in Paris
hid the Jews he could in a freezer and turned out the light.

The largest part yet of a fallen airplane was found in the sea,
having flown where it wasn’t supposed to.

The tree is still up. Each year I am more reluctant to take it down.
This is not a religious statement but a statement on the art
my daughter has made and which decorates all the branches.

Each year I want to hold her closer than the last.
Each year I let her go into the world a little bit farther.

She sprays glitter across her shoulders so she resembles the winter sky
outside the window, four degrees and falling, but she is warm and singing.

A world enlightened by the dark might work better I often wonder
considering Isaac Newton’s unpublished works were still about magic,
the thing he’s credited for taking from this world.

A man who asked questions in Saudi Arabia received the first 50
of a thousand flogs today, and in the coils of sound that travel the earth
through pain and sorrow I heard him.

In Paris, everyone had to stay indoors yesterday.
The first siege since 10th of May in 1940. I flipped through the photographs
of the Seine last July when Les Berges opened and the lovers and the artists and the children with their families and the young and the old gathered along the Seine,

and I photographed them without their knowing
because I did not speak enough French to join them.
(This is true for me in all languages, sometimes even my own.)

But when I hear the rough-throated howl of my dog at the night’s pant-cuff,
ready to chase down heaven,

or when I listen to my daughter’s voice describe a really cool trick
involving a coke bottle and three-point-five hours,

I think of a Sufi story about the bird of love who finds no place to land
so alights in the inmost human heart.

and I take a sip of this wine
that tonight only tastes of the hope humanity has sipped at every day’s end
for all time,

that which is dark and heavy and sweet.
A Sangiovese, the blood of the sky god,
out of this glass blown of thunder.