by Persis Karim


Here–the place
where we speak their names
in shadows and reflections,
the trace of our belonging,
in this refuge–still living in
threads of memory–even when
the infection of violence, chaos
of new explosions force us
to remember the dead, the scared,
the hungry in Aleppo, Baghdad,
Sana’a, San Francisco, Jerusalem

we carry this prayer on our lips

Hold your baby tight with the faith
that someone will receive you, want
you, want to know the story
of your life, someone’s hands
will circle you, someone’s heart
will hold you, someone’s nation
will welcome you after someone
else sought your erasure

we carry this prayer on our lips

In the requiem of light, you will be
more than a displaced person,
you will no longer be adrift
in the open sea where your suitcase
is the raft of your dreams, where
your sacred prayer can float
in the air of magnified hope
and the cycles of the universe
cannot stir a flower without
troubling a star,

Here, where we can be
moving in the canopy
of the human.

​Reprinted with permission by the author and available at “Poets and Dreamers.”

Photo by Marie Boucher

Person Who Submitted This Post
Marie Boucher