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"Jerusalem" by Moriel Rothman
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Published on May 17, 2012
For more of Moriel's writing and poetry check out http://thelefternwall.com/
your sidewalks are so soft
they feel like used mattresses
even the most shmeagoly of your pigeons
is a like metaphor for like peace
I once plucked a pigeon but that was before
Jonathan Safran Foer turned me vegetarian
Yehuda Amichai wrote poems about your pigeons
much better than I can
This morning I wandered your walls
with a lantern and a digital camera
and through the light and the lens
and the tourists pouring into the City of David
I could see Silwan
through a crack in your ancient-war wall
I think it's weird how men often refer to you
like you are a woman
You are not a woman
you are a city
Do you agree that women shouldn't
be referred to like they are cities
to walk on and sleep in
and take by force
Does the word vagina make you uncomfortable?
I want to grow an army of kids inside of your moist and dark Biblical caves
I will send them to a Bilingual preschool
where they will learn both Arabic
and will grow up causticly optimistic
and infinitely hospitable
This morning the guard didn't let me in
to visit your Western Wall
because I was wearing a shirt that said
"We are all Al Arakib"
What is Al Arakib? He asked
And I told him it means,
We are all rabbits.
But so and despite my insistence that we are all
relatively harmless lettuce eating mammals
he did not let us pass
Do you have a permit to build there?
On your Eastern front it was quiet and
some men saw my shirt and said great!
May God grant you prosperity.
Come and eat with us.
But we said no thank you, because often Palestinians do not eat enough leafy greens for our taste.
What about the Palestinians?
There will be a demonstration today at four o'clock
It will begin at the Pigeons gate
and will end in disappointment
Maybe I should grow a mustache
I left my yarmulkeh and phylacteries
in Willamsburg laced in the rhythm
of Mr. Ginsbergs kaddish
What would Maimonedes think
about the light rail?
Would you fine Our Fine Sages of Blessed Memory
180 shekels if they could not work the ticket machine?
I'm Sorry. That wasnt fair. I just wanted a line
that would put me squarely in the consensus
do you get lonely also?
When will you stop learning and get a job?
When will you put on a uniform like everyone else?
When will you stand at a checkpoint?
When will succumb to your fanatics?
When will you spit us out?
Jerusalem, maybe if you stop eating for seventy five days then maybe they
will let you out of solitary confinement
and tell your what you're doing here.
My writing hand has lost it's cunning
Which is mostly OK because
I am a Lefty
We made the New York Times headlines
You are probably bored of poems
You could use an intro to Queer Theory
I am hungry
Let's have a barbecue
Let's have pigeon
Pray for me
The irony is always lost on you
You dont really want to go to war do you?
Put a note in your wall for
Me and for al arakib and for Silwan
And for yourself
Pray for us
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