Vox Populi

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Kareem Tayyar: The Prince of Shiraz

This is your country.

You know which wells you can climb down before nightfall,

Which wells will be dry even after the autumn rains,

Which wells have paintings on the sides of their inner walls

Of beautiful women,

The leaping bodies of wild animals,

The silhouettes of the moon and the sun when both are awake

In an overcast sky.


You know the names of the streets that are listed on no map,

Streets that the city surveyors do not even remember constructing,

The names of the streets that are the temples for children who have grown

Tired of their fathers’ wars.


You know which wind has been sent by Allah himself,

And which wind is the son of Scheherazade,

A small gem of a story meant to entertain the birds in the trees

And the clothes on the lines

In the gardens of mothers who dream of borderless lands

Where every house is a cathedral

That will never be desecrated by bomb or notice of eviction.


You know which men are but ghosts,

Their spirits still serenading the landscapes of cities that they laid down

Their lives for,

You know which men have long given up dreaming at nights,

You know which men hold in their hands the promise of tomorrows

That nobody need fear.


You deny being a mystic,

You deny being a seer of truths,

But I know which heart still beats inside of your chest,

And which one floats like a kite for the next generation to fly across a season

That will carry no threat in its changing of colors.


Copyright 2015 Kareem Tayyar. First published in Magic Carpet Poems (Tebot Bach)

3 comments on “Kareem Tayyar: The Prince of Shiraz

  1. singsharon
    October 16, 2018

    What a powerful, beautiful poem!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Michael Simms
      October 16, 2018

      Yes, I love it too!


  2. singsharon
    October 16, 2018

    What powerful, beautiful poem!

    Liked by 2 people

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This entry was posted on October 16, 2018 by in Poetry, War and Peace and tagged , , , .

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