Elegy To A Kurdish Father - Poem by Leo Briones
Elegy to a Kurdish father
for Ekim Erdogan
Alone in a green meadow I pray,
not on my knees but hands held high.
I think of the Kurdish girl in the London fog—
her Baba is gone, the night has come.
Behind the East End walls a bluesy soulful note.
The cockney drink bitter beer, rattle and chat.
But she is not there, she is a continent away—
for the Sultans ruled from Constantinople to Budapest
from Medina to Algiers—
and in the muscle of the coffee the tendons of kabobs
there is a tone in her Baba’s voice, a light in a dark green forest.
The tale of the Kardelen—
the Snowdrop, so shy, below the snow,
knows the sun fingers will smother its breath—
so it hides, like the prized nuts of a brown squirrel,
in the custody of winter’s frozen soil.
Still, above ground,
the Snowdropp hears the wind of her lover’s song—
she longs and longs then rises to her lover’s strum
but in a flash her petal’s gone
Yet in that second, that moment
when love was once again made new—
the girl, well beyond the fog and pub dwellers,
hears only her Baba’s granite voice
revealed in the eternal romance of Kardelen
sprouting toward Spring, love and valor.
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