London

London, you’ve taught me a couple things.

One is, that you’re probably better looking

and in a better mood when the sky is heavy with

passionate rain clouds.

Heat does not suit you, nor does the blinding sun on

your cobbled streets.

And the mighty Thames looks

well…weak.

And your bright red double deckers are charming from afar,

but inside them, the constant stopping and going

makes the mind wander, in its frustration, to leaping

out of the window in a sweaty, claustrophobia-induced rage.

But your markets, landmarks, gardens, and shoppes

made up for transportation woes.

Another valuable lesson is that

heartbreak can reach even your ancient fortresses,

your hundred-year-old buildings, bridges, and houses.

I keep expecting to see his face,

and the smile that still makes my heart weep,

the eyes that cause my pulse to race,

and the love I thought I’d always keep.

Nay, not London, not an ocean.

Not a marbled arch or preserved parliament

can keep the pain at bay.

But in the crevices of my palm, to which I whisper

my du’a

Filling my hands with prayer and repentance,

it is only then that I can cope.

The extra beat in my heart is solace.

Only then can I feel some hope.

 

Nesha Usmani

July 9, 2012

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