Vox Populi

A Public Sphere for Poetry, Politics, and Nature

Kareem Tayyar: In the Library, Golden West College, Thursday, 2:15pm

You are sitting at the Tutoring Desk

And waiting for your next appointment to arrive,

When you notice one of your literature students,

A good-natured,

Enthusiastically intelligent young man who has shown a fondness in the early weeks

Of the semester for the stories of Sherman Alexie,

Kneel down in front of the large windows that look out onto a small courtyard

And begin to pray towards Mecca.


It lasts only a few minutes,

And all around him people go about their lives,

Checking their iPhones,

Thumbing through textbooks,

Scanning the shelves for the titles they need,

But what you notice as he goes through his ritual

Is that watching a good man pray isn’t so much witnessing an act of faith

As much as it is watching an artist at work,

His entire body a paintbrush,

The pen of a poet,

The guitar in the hands of a true musician,

The mundane suddenly transformed by his belief in its sanctity into something

Resembling paradise.


Copyright 2017 Kareem Tayyar

Kareem Tayyar is an Iranian-American poet who lives in California. His most recent book is Magic Carpet Poems published by Tebot Bach.



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