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Another day and counting

October 22, 2001
The Iranian

It's routine now:

I drive my son to school,

the sun just breaking through Pacific mist.

Driving home, I listen to the news

and quietly cry.


My son won't listen anymore:

"All opinions, hot air. Call me when they find some facts."

Proud and fragile priviledge of youth:

demand the truth.


The sky recedes, ashamed.

What passes now for truth on this cold ball?

The sky is pink with shame

beyond the concrete ribbons where commuters crawl.

What's in that microscopic dust

that bends our light to post-card pretty pinks?

Dust of concrete hopes exploded,

dust of homes of sun-baked brick,

complex chains of human dust

and dust of promises to youth.


Tonight my cheeseburger arrives

with a flag poked proudly in the bun.

The tiny paper stars and stripes seem far away,

victory through the wrong end of the telescope,

moon-landing on the circle of my plate.

The waitress smiles broadly,

but the food tastes bad,

or maybe I've just lost my appetite.

Comment for The Iranian letters section
Comment for poet Zara Houshmand

By Zara Houshmand

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