I am From

Originally written as part of an assignment to introduce myself for an Interpersonal Communication class.

I am from a dusty Arab city of smiling families unsure of their futures.
I am from Boston and interlaced subway lines in five colors and queer MIT students playing with lightsabers.
I am from friends in other countries who I only see every few months.
I am from unkempt Linux enthusiasts trading shell scripts, brilliance, and misogyny on IRC channels.
I am from Christians praying in tongues and writing research papers for the salvation of the world.
I am from forums of questionably sane book fans warring over minutiae and exclaiming together in awe.
I am from slant-roofed American churches with green lawns and blonde girls with purity rings.
I am from maps and stories of imaginary worlds and characters and languages.
I am from a family in stable happy orbit as worlds spin around them.
I am from fantasy novels with strange magic and joyful endings.
I am from a God of telos, meaning, fulfillment.

Close Your Eyes

Close your eyes!
Any moment the veil of visible light
will be rent by the radiance dancing through the world,
too joyful to contain itself, bounding between atoms, bouncing off gravity, bursting blinding to break our
seven little slices of rainbow.
Close your eyes!
Your heart might catch the resonance of the universe
and vibrate until it breaks with joy
into singing dust.
Close your eyes!
Stay in the still darkness
where joy does not burn with sorrow
and knowledge never sears with mystery.
Close your eyes.

Explosions at Sunset

Some bombs went off at a prominent location near my house yesterday, as I was playing the piano. In truth, I got up right away and ran to the back room of our house because it’s safest…but once I had waited for a while I did go back and keep playing, with smoke in the distance.

smoke – clears – sirens – wail
I sit – my fingers still on
the piano keys –

Context

Sound also follows
the law of supply and demand:

when there is little, every sound
is loud, clear, detailed, valued, expensive;

when there is much, every sound
is lost, soft, fuzzy, annoying, cheap;

a fan whirring in a storm of electronic buzz
is just another distraction, earsore,

but a fan whirring in a silent room
is a rhythmic lilt of wind.