Where you could get a latte served

to you in a thick white cup, an animal cracker

and a spoon set in the saucer,

and, sinking into an soft sofa, could lose

yourself like all of us splashing sparrow-like

in our private pools of wi-fi—

she’s opted for Persian Nectar,

offered by the nice young man. She expected

blue as opals, shot

with pink and violet, small fires.

But it’s the peaches of Paradise she gets,

perfumed with bergamot,

Sa’di’s Gulistan, a spring morning,

attar-gul in whiffs in the walled garden.

The kingly hoopoe hoots

to a nightingale chanting in the

branches of a jasmine, tulips nodding

in a breezy dance, a pool,

its fountain splashing droplets

in languid streams, roped pearls in sunlight,

the sheen of the turtle-dove…

Will she find the Beloved? She tips

the glass to her lips, closes her eyes and swallows

all and nothing that is not there.

                                                              in Politics & Prose’s District Lines Vol. II, Spring 2014


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