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In the Name of God بسم الله

Walking Backwards

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This isn't a religious poem (although I do write quite a bit of religious poetry). I wrote it for a female friend who has become lost: she has become pregnant out-of-wedlock, after rejecting a pious and good man as a potential husband, and settling for a lesser man of dubious intentions, and questionable character. And after seeing her, in her shattered state last night, I was moved to write this. 


Walking Backwards


She loses her form like the sea-blasted coast

placid and tearless in the assault

time-weathered and forgiving,

lost between shoals, perishing

in moonlit oceans


she gives up her being

like the virgin sacrifice casting aside

her ivory gown before vanishing

into a dying forest

of reckless geometry


and her once delicate speech

filled with witticisms and joy

has withered like retreating branches

and unharvested fruit

in unwanted orchards


Stained-glass windows become opaque

and opulent gardens decay,

while our life narratives succumb

to murderous conclusions

and irreversible errors


and the precious ones who gathered

with us in desperate solitudes

and shallow masquerades

are lost when we turn away

like discarded toys


But this is what she wanted,

with reasoning or sentiment

that isn’t to be understood or questioned.

For the girl who walked backwards,

anywhere out of this world

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