by Mike Alexander
The tempers in the city square grew hotter
with every word, & when a chador’d daughter
threw something at a soldier’s head, he shot her;
where can we go to wash our hands in water?
A simple scuffle broke into jihad;
newscasters saw the left hand of Mossad
in every shadow of the house of God —
where can we go to wash our hands in blood?
The bodies of the just & the unjust
lay side by side. Our ears could not adjust
muezzin song against our own disgust —
where can we go to wash our hands in dust?
Then, maghrib wind washed clean the desert sands,
our battlements, our histories, our hands ...