Circles in the Grass

Religion is the plight of the soul, the bane of faith.

The call for prayers, the wailing cry of a minaret weeping, yet again.

I take my shoes off and walk on the grass. Walk and walk, in circles. Oblongs. The grass is a caress, full of spices and mist and thirst. And loneliness. And stolen nap times. Arms tucked under sweaty heads, emaciated, distrustful. This is what the grass is for, a sanctuary from the sky above and the memory of the sun just minutes ago, insidious, discriminatory, whipping their sweating brows.
I want to lay my head next to theirs and dream. What would I see there, under the eyelids twitching with fear? A crane collapsing, a rope snapping, the endless echo of a scream, a plastic bag where the portioned-out lunch remains untouched, rotting.

This is what feet are made for, to walk bare on grass, the toes drifting into a trance, inhaling the sound of the sea underneath. It is not smooth, soothing. These are blades, needles. A grid of unevenly cut shapes woven into the pale tapestry of a forced green. A new color. Shade yet to be named.
And the toiling of ants.

It is orange dresses, black skirts, white pants, not maroon robes. Pedicured toes nails, waxed legs and armpits, the face threaded, the eye brows a nuisance, perfectly plucked.

The hair unkempt, curls filling the spaces between neck, shoulders and waist, refusing to be tamed.

45 years old. I am.

How did I end up here, alone, redefining loneliness, rewriting my past, never the same story twice? I’ve stopped asking.
The truth. The truth is sewn in the hem of a thoub, snow white, of the man I once loved.
I promised to cherish him and love him. I promised never to forget the white thoub, the shoulders underneath, and the hands trembling with tenderness.
How did I forget?
How did I break the back which carried me and turned away from the face with the greying moustache, black once. Raven black.

Soul searching.



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