Poem: An Expansive Land

Ancient Scottish ruins

Let me still the trembling of your hands
with my own. This is your motherland.
You are home.
How could anyone belittle you?
I am little beside you,
and I do not mind.
I love your glowing mind, your soul
like an expansive land
where you build yourself up
and tear yourself down. You plant
entire forests, paint the sky
red cheeked and laughing,
erect cities and watch them fall.
Your rivers flood, your balance
is overthrown, your crown
half buried in earth. The animals and birds
join in cry and hue.
You question all you thought true –

then return to yourself
and to God, perhaps not knowing
who you are but knowing
what you are
and what you are not.
You are hot as a peat fire,
bold beside the tiny people, brilliant
beside the shadows, more passionate
than you dream. You flush
with the agony of life, you rush
to the duel, you laugh and embrace
and ache to save the lost.
Let me take your hands and stroke them
softly, so softly to start.
Let me ease the trembling of your heart.

* * *

Wael Abdelgawad
July 8, 2017
Fresno, California

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