The Moor's Last Laugh
My daughters mean the world to me
To keep them safe is my intent
But in a time of war can fathers
Protect daughters? I used to be
So cheerful, so easy in my cares.
But now I hate the moonlight
Scared to be taken unawares.
We are occupied now by Christian armies.
But we keep Muhamed close to our hearts
Whilst professing to be Christians.
In the church the Inquisition watch
Us carefully. We've learnt to genuflect
At the right moment. Nobody wants to be
Burnt alive. We have to do the hardest
Work in the fields. The Christians
Have taken our homes, our wealth.
We hide our eyes and cry when
We remember how Christians, Jews
And Muslims worked together under
The old dispensation. Before the fall
Of Grenada. Fortune no longer smiles
On us. We do as we are told and work.
I have to stop myself bargaining in Arabic
At the market. Arabic is forbidden.
These savage Goths burnt all our
Books. Translations from Byzantium,
Works in Aramaic and Hebrew. The Jews
Of course, are persecuted too. Oppression's
Rod is hard and brutal. Even the children
Are Not spared 'What do mummy and daddy
Do on a Friday? Have they hidden any books?'
These were the very words we heard:
Now I hear in the future the Muslims
Are coming home. Building mosques
In Cordova. The Alahambra is our own.