Praying with Fringes 09/08/2016 – neither the end nor the beginning

from Claims
Lisa Suhair Majaj

I am the woman remembering jasmine,
bougainvillea against chipped white stone.
I am the farmwife
whose cracked hands claim this soil.
I am the writer whose blacked-out words
are birds’ wings, razored and shortn.
I am the lost one who flees,
and the lost one returning;
I am the dream, and the stillness,
and the keen of mourning.

I am the wheat stack, and I am
the olive.  I am plowed fields young
with the music of crickets.
I am the ancient earth struggling
to bear history’s fruit.
I am the shift of soil
where green thrusts through,
and I am the furrow
embracing the seed.

I am many rivulets watering
a tree, and I am the tree.
I am opposite banks of a river,
and I am the bridge.
I am light shimmering
off water at night,
and I am the dark sheen
that swallows the whole moon.

I am neither the end of the world
nor the beginning.

published in Food for Our Grandmothers: Writings by Arab American & Arab Canadian Feminists

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