What god will catch me
when I’m down, when I’ve taken
sufficient drink to reveal
myself, when my words are little
more than a blurring
of consonant and vowel?
I’m drunk on spring:
branches of waxy leaves that
greet me at my driveway,
a family clutching
trays of sweets.
How can I sing of this?
If I cannot sing, then
make me mute. Or lend me
words, send me
the taste of another’s prayer,
cool as a coin
newly minted on the tongue.

Dilruba Ahmed, “Petition” from Dhaka Dust. Copyright © 2011 by Dilruba Ahmed. Reprinted by permission of Graywolf Press,
Source: Dhaka Dust (Graywolf Press, 2011)
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