My Daughter Asks Me What The Soul Is
I who have no certainty of belief,
how can I answer? Maybe the soul
is a small bird inside the chest,
beating its wings for the joy of freedom.
Maybe it’s a kernel of light, a pulsating star,
a small moon within us that waxes and wanes
without leaving the sky. Perhaps it’s the energy
that lightens our steps, the radiance that illumines
our words, the sound that hums below everything.
I ponder the rush of water in the kitchen sink
as I wash, she dries. Her towel moves meditatively
across the flat white plates, the chipped soup bowls,
the forks bent from the garbage disposal.
Her hair is in need of brushing, her face slightly grubby,
her eyes luminous with thought. Gazing at her
I feel my soul, whatever that may be, expand.
Perhaps the olive trees outside the window
know the answer. They lean toward each other,
a bulwark against grayness: each tree its own life,
a witness to the sky, the sky a witness
to the trees, sky and trees a witness to the earth.
I turn off the water and dry my hands,
sense quiet vibrating like a pulse. Beneath our feet
the earth turns, its subtle motion a witness
to our humanness: so ordinary, so transcendent.
Causes Lisa Majaj Supports
Playgrounds for Palestine
Middle East Children's Alliance
Princess Basma Center for Disabled Children
RAWI: Radius of Arab American...