So this is the way fear ends.
So this is the way a ribbon wraps a bomb.
So this is the way a terrorist says goodbye
To his mother, the way his mother reacts to the news.
So this is an Israeli. So this is an angel in triage.
This is a man at his prayer, prostrate, sincere,
his facing east. So this is where I am in deep water.
So this is where the news commentator interrupts
the sit-com. So these are the M & M’s I ate, red,
white and blue, during the catastrophe. So this is Iraq.
So this is Pakistan. So this is the world Gary Snyder
predicted, instant exposure to each other’s beauties
and pains. So this is my body. So this is an ankle
held up against the angle of Twin Towers. Silhouette
of wrist against New Orleans. Now we can’t feel
our own pain. So this is the veil over our hearts,
like a calf born with a membrane, a baby with a caul.
Our heart must be licked. So this is the desert
I’ve resisted. The Hebrew language I never learned.
So this is Arabic. Ishmael and Isaac at their father’s grave,
the last opportunity. So this is a man with a white beard
singing, his belly large as Ganesh. So this is the intersection
of sacred and profane, that rotund prayer, that enormous
voice, that girth of faith. That immense thank-you
I felt, that Shofar blast, that opened heart, that last
Breath and that first breath. This is the name. Of Breath.