While others queue for food and drink,
I refuse.

My head will swoon and ache and groan,
But the drop of water it desires shall be denied,
Although blood may slow and turn to honey
And rivers of refreshment run across parched lips.

Inside this hollow frame there burns a fire
Where bit by bit I cast some vain desire
Until there sits the smiling slave of an ant
Where once sat a lion of pride.

This is a month to purge the heart
And drain it of the pale blood of hypocrisy
And wash away the clots of vice and insolence
With the flawless water of absolution.

A handful of golden dates glistens in the sunlight
That has yet to appear across the horizon
And signal the renewal of renouncement
From a world I have ceased to believe in.

One does not speak when one is abstaining
From the trivialities of a passing world,
One lectures about the virtue of an ancient wisdom
Or rants in a delirious thirst for water and meaning.

I am laughing with the Enlightened Ones
Or I am crying with the penitent lovers
And am somber in between
Like a forest passing though seasons.

Suddenly French avails itself more readily
To describe le feu, sauvage et calme, que reste en moi
And Spanish to recite concepts such as
Corazón, rosa, zapato, alma and eternidad.

English has failed to understand the depths of hunger,
But it is easy to get lost in the fog of its smokeless fire;
Perhaps the language can learn the anguish of bread,
Until then I must resort to words whose meanings are unknown.

Still I am laughing with the Enlightened Ones,
Still I am sitting beneath the sacred fig trees,
Still I am laughing with the Enlightened Ones,
Still I am hunting for Truth in everything.

Sleep calls to me, because the body is broken,
And I laugh at it like a cruel conquistador,
Still I cradle my head, if only for to think
And ponder what He said in a time beyond time:

The Fast is for Me and I will give the reward for it.