By Kazim Ali
With thick strokes of ink the sky fills with rain.
Pretending to run for cover but secretly praying for more rain.
Over the echo of the water, I hear a voice saying my name.
No one in the city moves under the quick sightless rain.
The pages of my notebook soak, then curl. I’ve written:
“Yogis opened their mouths for hours to drink the rain.”
The sky is a bowl of dark water, rinsing your face.
The window trembles; liquid glass could shatter into rain.
I am a dark bowl, waiting to be filled.
If I open my mouth now, I could drown in the rain.
I hurry home as though someone is there waiting for me.
The night collapses into your skin. I am the rain.
Kazim Ali, "Rain" from The Far Mosque. Copyright © 2005 by Kazim Ali. Reprinted by permission of Alice James Books.
Source: The Far Mosque (Alice James Books, 2005)
Poet, editor, and prose writer Kazim Ali was born in the United Kingdom to Muslim parents of Indian descent. In 2003 Ali co-founded Nightboat Books and served as the press’s publisher until 2007. Ali has taught at Oberlin College and the low-residency Stonecoast MFA program at the University of Southern Maine. He lives in Oberlin, Ohio.
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