Moon Over Isfahan

Each heart beats in the same language, whether the mouth speaks English or Pashtoon.

By some ancient covenant written in our bones, we consent to the light that spills through a stranger's eyes.

Whether we worship Allah or Persephone, it only takes a glance to know that all blood ebbs and flows to the rhythm of one moon.

Yes, friend, priests and imams call you to war, speaking of light and darkness. But there's fat in your marrow that's deeper than fear;

Something that nods
to the enemy, effusing tears, grinning wildly in agreement, murmuring, 'Yes, yes, you too are right!'

Every Jew inhales electrons of Mohammad's body. The Prophet's breath contains Christ's sighs, particles of sheep dung shaken from Moses' sandals.

Right now, dusty atoms of Jesus flesh swirl into our eyes. We look at each other but see only him, the way a gaze sent up from Isfahan, and a gaze from the Dome of the Rock, mingle in one star.

Now try this experiment: remove your heart and place it on a butcher's block. Is it made out of paper and ink? Is it a sphinx face carved from stone?

Is your heart white or black, Persian or Hindu? Or is it fragrant like a wild blossom from an unexplored forest in the mountains?

Mine gushes Burgundy, yours Cabernet; maybe they're both a little drunk, trembling, alive.

See if it gasps like a fish with prayer, in a spasm of wanting. See if it yearns to fill itself with the blood of every man or woman on earth....

This is what you'll learn: to depend on the silence of the body to solve every riddle of words.

To gaze toward the nameless sun at the center of your ancient brain, where all scriptures came from.

To listen awhile by a stream in the summer woods, where water murmurs and swallows wait for evening in green shadows.

To trust in the answer that seeps from the wound of your missing rib, and listen to the breath that comes and goes like this:

"सो ऽहम.  So'ham.  I breathe in God.
I breathe out me."

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