Thursday, May 5, 2011
Written in the Sands
In imitating God’s long winded hand
the sinuous Quranic script takes wind
on sand as paradigm for truth and wit:
but life’s impermanence embedded there
leaves hoped for heavens nowhere to be found.
Those born into the faith must long in vain
for lost oases with cool waving palms,
displaced by rearing towers of steel and glass
thrown up by potentates grown fat with oil,
and foreign slaves who toil within their thrall.
One son born into this oppressive clan
was dutiful in studies and devout
but, while fortunate in wealth and power,
dissented in his heart and drifted far
from his family’s involvement with the west.
His world of minarets and ritual
now left for barren wastes of rock and sand,
low murmuring of women by water
in cool courtyards of decorated tile
abandoned for coarse cloth and jogging mules.
The bad breath and crooked smiles of his men,
dark eyes gleaming by the fire with God’s wrath,
revealing burning coals of hate within,
fed by left slanted verses, memorised
in boyhood and digested with each bow.
Now, the mountains rise, forbidding of life,
demonstrating the smallness of man’s dreams
and his pitiful span of life and hope,
brief shelter from Satan’s all seeing eyes
until the bane of aery fires rains down.
The only path between two living hells:
the gleaming luxury of worldly wealth,
or some soulless toil within Satan’s mills
was to restore the twin temples of God
in the land of his nurture and his birth.
But first, tear down the twin towers of Satan,
they said, with rising fervour round their fires,
use your wealth and influence with men
to capture and guide his soaring eagles
and dash them burning into his proud den.
And so God’s will came to pass, as it must,
mysterious in consequence, by stealth
the fires of Hell rose up from out the dust
and ravaged all the lands of faithful men
in Mammon’s name and lust for power and wealth.
Wraith like and hollow eyed the Prophet’s man
wandered in barren lands, beset by pain
and doubt, loved by some reviled by many,
knowing the ever testing hand of God
would lead him at last to His paradise.
Meanwhile, a sojourn in some doleful place,
would have to do while further plans were made
to rouse the world from sinful slumbering
and false enjoyment of a failing world,
mired in material faith and godless strife.
Such vain thoughts of glory were soon cut short,
by treachery and bureaucratic thought,
when Satan’s dogs did their master’s bidding,
intruding on his brief domestic bliss
administered the fruits of Judas’ kiss.
Now the right hand of God writes on the waves
another windy tale of hate and death,
and far beneath the pale faced Prophet lies,
perhaps dreaming of a better life, lived
again, but next time not so much in vain.