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Featured Poetry Winter 2021

Oregon Muslim

by Nur Shelton

One day in this life, insha’Allah,
I want to leave the train in Marrakech 
or Istanbul and listen to the adhan 
as it soars from morning minarets.
I want to sleep with the city in the day
when the shops are shut on Ramadan time
and wake with her when the night begins
to shake hands and sing — to pray for peace
and give thanks for three sips of water
and a date.

I want to kneel 
shoulder to shoulder with sibling strangers 
and put my forehead to the masjid floor,
grateful for a chance to be better
and a path to walk on my journey home.
I will give salaams to the people in the street,
to the pilgrims and porch cats
sitting below windowsill flowers. 

Until then, alhamdulillah,
I will be here 
at the other end of this world
with my hands in the rain-blessed soil 
of this garden mosque, 
content to praise Allah by watching
the snow peas spiral towards
the top of the fence post,
or heaven. 

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