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A moving story and poem based upon it.

the Book of Pain

Building detail

I would like to write a poem about the death of Mírzá Mihdí, the Purest Branch,
who burst open the doors of Reunion and broke the shackles of an empire.
It would tell of his mother’s grief, his sister’s misery, his brother’s pain
and of course, his Father’s love…

It would, most tenderly, tell of the seven, small, shiny, black beach rocks
with worn, rounded corners found in his pocket and which comprised
all that he possessed in this world. “Where did you get them?” I’d ask.
“What was it about these seven that caught you and held you so that
you’d leave them behind you? What were you trying to tell us?”
But most of all I’d tell of his Father releasing His son from his duties
that hot afternoon, knowing in advance what would come to pass:
that he would go to pray on the windswept prison rooftop;
that he would become enraptured in his meditations;
that he would…

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