Monday, January 4, 2021

Fridays in the Park (or how to make a boy holy) by Omar Sakr

Fridays in the Park
(or how to make a boy holy)

& i can’t help but notice his hips first, bumbag slung low,
as the train doors open at Roxburgh Park. & i take in the
trackies, his shadowed jaw, the slabs of concrete arcing
over him. & as Arab boys are timeless or else stuck in time,
i breathe easier in their pause, their familiar inescapable
heat. & later, i spot him in the supermarket & know he
knows i’m watching the way a shepherd tends his flock
or the way the ocean shivers when the moon slides onto
its back. & there is no significant body of water in the
suburbs, nothing to drown in yet we drown anyway. & i
take him in the long grass of the park, i taste him in the
weeds, knees wet with mud, the night buzzing with the
deaths of mosquitoes. the wild silence after, mouths heavy
with musk, is complete & even the birds are mute with
love in their nests. there is no song except our huffed
breaths, the shuffle of grass bending beneath us, tickling
skin, the whole world an animal gone quiet. i asked
my aunty about the supernatural hush i felt & she said
the animals stand still in holy awe, they know the Day
of Judgment will fall on a Friday. & this is why neither
of us made a sound, why his fingers bruised my lips to
crush the gasping as one of us disappeared into the other,
why the park bristled with jungle knowing, the kind
with teeth, why it felt like the end of the world &
the beginning, o the beginning of another.

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