a light knocking on the sleep door like the sound of a rope striking the side of a boat heard underwater boats pulling up alongside each other beneath the surface we rub up against each other will we capsize in the surge and silence of waking from sleep you are a lost canoe, navigating by me I am the star map tonight all the failed echoes don't matter the painted-over murals don't matter you can find your way to me by the faint star-lamp we are a fleet now our prows zeroing in praying in the wind to spin like haywire compasses toward whichever direction will have us
From The Fortieth Day by Kazim Ali. Copyright © 2008 by Kazim Ali. Reprinted by permission of B.O.A. Editions. All rights reserved.