Monday, August 27, 2012

Birds Still Fly In Damascus

Birds still fly in مدينة الياسمين‎
The hum of the flaming helicopter aiming for the new destiny hole

falling on Al-Marjeh, the central square of Damascus.

The blow up has made a flock of cuckoos fly around and away.

They were hiding someway,

high in the remaining cypresses,

low under the wrecked rickshaws.


The bullets that constantly hit the walls of every standing building

are digging to the inside

Alas! They ignore the roofs.

Me thinks that is where the sparrows have been nesting,

each mother with feathers on her offspring’s hearing cavities

hoping that this new generation will not bare her fear of the past few months,

that somehow those men will respect her and cease fire.


The collapsing of the mayor’s house on the corner house of the migrating lawyer

has launched a mass of a hundred pigeons to the sky,

all dusted and wounded, barely flying to keep up,

I’ve just grabbed a falling feather

-it is white-


Birds, they said, are still flying in Damascus.

I can assure you this before I go.

But wait!

This old eagle isn’t.

He is sitting in his huge nest on the water tower,

waiting for something I do not know.

he has no eggs to hatch,

he has no mouths to feed,

he just sits there with his wings open in dismay.

If he is thirsty,

Why won’t he drink from the deposit’s ajar door?

If he is hungry,

why won’t he just feast on the vulnerable rats

as they follow the centrifugal urge of this city to empty up?  

But if he is scared why won’t he sneak late at dusk to find a new home very far?

So quiet he is, an idle eagle,

a humble symbol,

of a dynasty ready to fall.


And now, full of days, I am ready to draw my own conclusions

and partly disagree,

Some birds just can’t fly in Damascus





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