My Tel Aviv
by Jonathan Joseph Barker

    And I remember it now
    My father and I
    Walking the rocky Mediterranean shore line
    Harnessed deep within our making and reforming
    Our mistakes and our troubles
    Our life sea breathed across a tumultuous blue sky
    As we kick sand up from our feet
    As the salty wind finds time with our hair
    Silver and thin, thick and auburn
    We move comfortably through the realm of our promised land
    Past and future
    Presently we become dry and stop for a beer in a place upon the beach
    We are seated and are quiet, our gazes crisscrossed in somber tingling
    I look out towards Jaffa, where we are headed
    The island of Jaffa where Jonah was sent out to sea and swallowed by the whale
    My eyes fall back to the scene in front of us
    A young father plays with his daughter in the surf
    Picking her up and swinging her down in the settling light rays of the fallen afternoon

    In little more than one year, this scene will be lit up once again
    But not by the glittering sun reflected off the misty blue sea
    There will be fiery white hot rays in its place
    Rays that will cut flesh and kill, maim my brothers and sisters, mothers and fathers
    It will be a blast that will send the detonator straight to Allah, and the night dancers
    that surround him hanging by threads from the desert stars and washed into the red rocky shore

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