The roses of Andalusia
The splashes of red, the heady bloom,
The opulent smell, patchouli oil, lingering.
In a marbled room: a certain slant of light,
Reveals these Andalusian roses creeping
Along the fence between Mudejar and Christian.
Between Morisco and Jew, between my lover and I,
Such dirty sweet hauntings
Under the heavy crimson blue skies of Cordova
Fleeting days, like the burnings at the stake,
Like regret, regret, regret. Oh! These sins of omission
Threaten my life; make me wake in a sweat in the night.
Half alive, all affright.
See this person’s golden hand so thin and frail in mine.
We excavate deep cells in Raqqa, in Granada, in Africa
All along the fault line, the earthquake zone
Between cultures, religions, races, histories.
The roses of Al-Andalusia shine in the stark bright sunlight
Through which Maimonides so clearly saw..