17 June 2009

Kazim Ali

[from Kazim Ali's The Far Mosque, Alice James, 2005]


We came to the next part together and eager,
trying on the accretion of coats,

your rough cheek against mine.
Cauldron eyes, you're striking, ferrous, uncurdling me.

All points of passage between two bodies
are points of danger.

What will be left as "what-I-believe-in"
hits the surface of the water from a great height?

Now no passengers, no sails, no anchor, only the me-craft,
swimming like crazy through fire-sleeved water with you.

Breathing it, being burned by it.
Thinking sometimes to walk on it.

Also being encircled.
Also being dispersed.

Sleep Bowl

The light bowl
of your voice

Sounds across the surface of my sleep
bit by bit coming to it

White wings brushing
against the eardrum

You were named in me thirteen years ago
by my mother rust-clad at the promise river

The dozen different versions of me
being carried on drafts away

Sleep little sweat-lodge, spirit house,
imaginary boy, petaled to my side, breathing

Saying his father's name
across the bowl of my sleep

Buy Kazim Ali's book @ Amazon

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