Submit your work, meet writers and drop the ads. Become a member
Infallibility
is not needing to defend,
not silencing dissidents.
Call me Ishmael. Some years ago - never mind how long precisely - having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world...  Moby ****, Herman Melville


Call me
Ishmael.

I hail
from
the clan
of Adam.

I am the
beloved
child
of Hagar;
unbowed son
of an upright
Ibrahim.

I am
the older
half brother
of Musa,
cousin to
Isa and
father to
Muhammad.

I work
in a bakery
that
overlooks
the roiling
waters of
the Nile.

It’s
owned
by an
Egyptian
General,
managed
by a
platoon
of his
hand picked
lieutenants.

I fire the
ovens,
roll the
dough
and pack
the loaves.

We bake
all day
but it seems
we cannot
quench
the hunger
that grips
our people.

My
brother
Musa
says
I bake
the bread
of tyrants
and serve it
to a people
starving for
freedom.

Musa
likes to say
if we wish
to feast at
the banquet
of liberty
we must
refuse
to eat
the bread
of fear.

In winter
our hunger
blends with
the misery
of living
in frigid
apartments.

My
dilapidated flat
in Darb Al-Ahmar
is one of a
thousand owned
by Cairo’s
most notorious
police chief.

The roofs leak,
the plumbing
is broken,
no heat in winter,
in summer
it’s a sweltering
furnace.

My home
is the
handiwork of a
cold blooded
landlord’s
indifference
to the freezing
rooms they
force us
to live in.

In their eyes,
our sole purpose
in life is to feather
their nest.

They demand
that the rent be paid
on the first of every month
and will make our life miserable
if we’re one day late
or a half a pound short.

Do they
actually
think
that we
live
only
to assure
the
warmth
and comfort
for them
and their
children?

In winter
they freeze
us into
inaction;
while
during the
summer,
swirling
ceiling fans
fail to relieve the
oppressive heat
of fire they
breathe down
our necks.

The batons
of the police
freely swing to
crack a head if
we fail to bow to
their authority
or grease
the extortionists
palms with
tributes to their
*******.

They never
shake down
their friends
that drive
the fancy
silver
Mercedes.

The big guys
roll wherever
they want.  

They
roll over
anything
they
choose.

They take
up parking
spaces in our lives;
leaving less room
for us to park
our tiny scooters.

I’m certain
the name
on their
drivers license
says privilege
and impunity.

Yet
somehow
we
always
get stuck
picking up
the tab
for
their
tolls.

Some slavishly
put coins
in parking meters
for them and get
compensated for it
by being offered
the opportunity
to wash their cars.

I’m glad
that I get
to bake
bread.

I was talking
to my friend
Isa at the
coffee shop,
he said,
“We needn't
live in a constant
state of
want and fear.”

A young man
sitting at
the next table
was a zealous
believer from
The Muslim
Brotherhood.

His name is
Muhammad,
he hands me
The Holy Quran.

My dear
Muslim
brother
exhorts
me to
submit.

He says that is
the way to a
fearless life;
free of any
need,
save
Allah’s
salvation.

My  
Muslim
brother
is firm
in his
belief
that
all
the answers
to
all
my problems
and
all
the answers
to
all
Egypt's problems
were
breathed on to
the pages of
The Holy Quran
with
The Prophet Muhammad’s
-(may peace be upon him)-
own breath;
his tongue
inscribing
the holy pages
in Arabic
squeezed
out by the
loving
embrace
of the
Angel
Gabriel.

Mubarak also boasts that
he too has all the answers to
alleviate the ills that plague us.

He’s
been ruling us
for forty years;
while the
Holy Quran
has been
with us
forever.

Our  
impatience
grows
as we yearn
for these promises
to be filled.

Mubarak swears  
he knows what is best
for the children
of Egypt.

Mubarak insists
that the way to
freedom from
want and fear
is submission to
his perpetual rule.

I get uneasy when
someone suggests
an infallibility.

I accept the
supreme dominion
and divine knowledge
of the Quran and Hadiths
but I’m not too sure
that the Imams,
politicians and
generals who
swore by its
truth really
understand
it themselves.

I am left
to question
if any of them
even see me?  

I am more of a
person then a
Muslim;
and
sometimes
I wonder
if even
Allah
has forgotten
the peril of
Ibrahim’s
children.

I wonder have
I disappeared
from Allah’s
unblinking eye
as well?

Sometimes
I look into
the mirror
to see if
I am real.

I am relieved
to see my image.

I have not
become invisible
to myself.

I am
emboldened
to know
that I am a
real person
of flesh and bones
with a mind
full of conviction
refreshed
with the blood
of a warm beating
heart.

I remind myself
I am a man,
not a faceless
subject
to be ruled.

I am an individual
not just another
submissive being
under the control
of a pious Imam.

I am Ishmael.

I recognize the fire of
life in my own eyes.

I can see the scars
of my decisions,
that my life has
etched upon my face.

I am not invisible.

I am not a casualty
of the twists of history
or the events of fate.

I take
responsibility
for me.

I am not a fish
swimming within
a giant school
trapped in an
ocean current
propelled
to a
predetermined
destination
of a well
laid net.

I am a man.

Let it be known
that I claim
responsibility
for my manhood
and I will
command
respect from
those who now
lord over me.

Like my father
Ibrahim, they
will recognize
me as an
unbowed
upright man.

They will
call me
Ishmael.

As I stand
I will raise my voice.

I will not remain
voiceless.

I am one voice
of many
who like me
have not
been heard.

We were once
grovelling dogs
that have been
transformed
into free range wolves,
set free from its cage,
we now form in packs
howling for justice.

We
will raise
our voice
in concert
so all
may hear.

We
will
make
them
listen.

They will
know who
I am.

Call me Ishmael.

Music Selection:
Muddy Waters
Mannish Boy

Oakland
2/9/12
jbm
this poem is part of a series on the Arab Spring
Bad Luck Feb 2019
I think I've always been alone . . .
At least, as long as I can remember.

But there's a part of me,
                       that still feels so connected --
To something near the source,
                        At the core of somewhere true.

Where we exist without our existence's limitations.
Where duality, begins to mean overlap,
                         And both fiction and fact,
                         One and yet another,
                         Things like "this" and "that"
                         Are the same, still . . .
Innocently unseparated,
                         In this place near to creation.

Maybe it's just my brain . . .
                        I do have a habit of creating dualities.
"Together, or apart? No," I think.
                       More like doubting infallibility.

                        --------------------------

So when I say I've always been alone,
I have to ask myself:

                                              "Have you really?"

"Of course you haven't been.
But who you are right now,
is no longer that you . . .
At least . . . not fully
."

                                      "So, if I was alone then,
                                       Does that mean that I
                                       might not be any longer?
"

"Oh, no."
I explained back to myself,
"I think you misunderstood me.
It's just . . .
That you'll never truly know,
Until there's nothing and nobody
."

                        --------------------------

That's a haunting truth to tell yourself,
            When you're off in your own head.
At least I won't be alone in my regret,
                         When I'm among the dead.
I'll find community in that.  
Surely,  that's the place to which I feel so connected!
The place where maybe two of myself is enough
                      to make just one of me feel,
Like I'm worth something more, than more or less,
                      In a place that's neither there, nor here . . .
At least, there, if I don't feel connected,
                     To myself, I may feel near.
ryn  Jun 2016
Cloak
ryn Jun 2016
.

Cloak of invisibility...
Render me unseen.
As I tremble with the fury of
a thousand downfalls
and untimely disappointments.
Let the complacent eye
merely skim the surface of my masquerade...
Without learning of what seethes underneath.


Cloak of invincibility...
Render me impervious...
To the callous digits that know only to point.
To the disastrous effect of heated words.
To the unforgiving nature of
my wayward thoughts and emotions.
Grant me strength and resilience
through hardened skin that promises not,
of betrayal.


Cloak of infallibility...
Render me trustworthy and honest.
So that I can rest with the knowledge
that what I feel is true...
What I feel is me.
That this isn't the result of the faint murmur
of errant gossip...
But instead the genuine exchanges
between the heart and mind.


Cloak of myth...
Render me a believer.
Aid me in finding my footing
in the blasted dark.
For...
I have been siphoned dry,
during these unsure times
that have drawn much...
Too much.


.
Manu M  Oct 2015
Celestial Love
Manu M Oct 2015
My darling you do know right?
That I love you in spite of every ‘in spite’
And forever would love you this way
I know you’d wonder-Why did I leave then?
Well sweetheart, have you ever seen
The sun and the moon intertwined?

We always believed that I
was your apple sauce
And you my pork chop
Either went missing
The delight shall remain incomplete

But love, you do know it hit both of us
How weak was the foundation of this structure
Infallibility is not something each
Relationship can afford
With which I perfectly agree

But only if it were for errors committed
Honestly in love
This moon would have defied
The force of gravity to reach his sun
Even when it meant burning his identity

My ashes would also have
Whispered your name girl
If only our attempts had been honest
Just for once

For the eyes drifting upwards
Did see us together at times
But hon, we were never intertwined

If only our apologies had some substance
If only our love were more than just pleasure
If only it were based on truth rather than fraudulence        
If only we had recognized OUR relevance

I’ll not waste much of your precious time
End I shall this sorrowful ballad
With these final parting lines-
“That every night this moon re-lives
The vivid memory of
The light radiated from his sun
That helps him hide the bruises, ugly scars
Dark holes in his soul from
The world’s gaze

Shining brightly every crepuscule
Following a similar phenomenon
As that of the celestial sun- giving its light
From millions of miles away to its celestial moon
The distance in no way affects the connection
between the two

Cupcake we both know that the moon
Will never have light of its own
It is the sun that will forever be the source
And the miles will forever exist
And must be maintained
To prevent the breaking of hearts beyond repair
Prevention is a necessity
Since the sound of such an apocalypse
Might remain unheard
receiving none’s attention and solace
For sound does not travel in space”
Mao
wrote a
Little Red Book

an
at the ready

inexhaustible
arsenal

of
quotations

instant ammo

for bandoleros
of correctness

flinging barbs

more deadly
then a cocked
AK

virulent
vanguards

of screaming
proletarian
heroes

whippin em out

to shout down

the running dogs
of capitalism

sprouting
reactionary
bourgeois
schemes

a
sure
quive­r

of razor
sharp

ideological
stilettos

appropriate
weapons

of
respo­nse

for the
heated
struggle

against
incorrect
ideas

instant
revelations­

of carefully
selected
corrections

uncovered

by fevered
thumbs

*******
dog eared
pages

the
indexed
platitudes

uphold
the sacred

holy
dogmas

of convicted
minds

firmly
convinced

in the
comfortable
certitude

of their
derangement

In college
we carried

our
Red Books

in frayed
pockets
of dingy
flannel shirts

but
Lennon
unlike
Warhol
didn't
like
Mao

so we
dropped
Lenin
and
listened
to
Dylan
tracks

hysterically
laugh­ing
tickled
to death

with
Marx Brothers
Horse Feathers

Down
on
funky
Broadway

we
traded
our
Dashikis

for
coo­l

Che
emblazoned
tees

a weekly
special

at the
Silk City
boutique

whom
the
capitalists

cleverly
omitted

breast
poc­kets.

leading us
to displace
our Red Books

forcing us
to adopt

the
revolutionary
logos

of store front
entrepreneurs

Teabagger's
have

a little
red, white and
blue book.

They call it
the Constitution.

Its more of a
totem

a convenient
fetish

the Koch
Brothers
believe

empowers
them

to
pursue

the liberty
of

an unbridled
id

and the
freedom

of banksters
and oil companies

to swallow
anything

that they

can sink

their

insatiable
fangs

into

laissez faire
tolerance

for their
gluttony

is codified

by the grand
celestial
ledgers

of a greedy
God

down with
capitalism

Qadhafi,
has a
Green Book

he holds
it like
hand
mirror

peering into
his vanities

infatuated
with the
beauty
of terror

the
perfect
reflection

of his heinous
malevolence

the fiat
of his
ad hocracy

the
repressive
rules
of totalitarianism

are all
spelled out

the gory
details of

corporal rule
and capital
punishment

suggestively
enforced with

the stern
mutterings

of dictatorial
diatribes

the certain
cruelty

of whip
and stick


Morning Joe
has a book

the incessant
suggestions

of righteous
Reaganisms

a self serving
rhetoric

a stirring
oratory

of narcissistic
prattle

the banal hum

of feigned
wisdom

egoistic
affectations

cuddled and
encouraged

by star stricken
Mika

the critical
thesis

its first rule

thou shall not speak
ill of any other
republicon

the infallibility
of potentates

is always
self evident



Oakland
2/27/11
jbm
He's been through this before
Writer's block
No, not that
But the feeling of it
Applied to life
As a whole

All's dank near the dream
The dream
That which we all have
Dreams of our lives
Dreams of our lies
As we abandon all good and evil
In our search for stability

What we seek
shining nameless
walking out of the world
we chase it
visualize it
black on glowing grey
the green light deferred for a grey one

It walks, then runs.

From these dreams
the witness
turns aside
constantly
throughout his life

the witness runs
the distance grows
the impossibility is perceptible
We know what is happening
We are all witnesses
yet we do not know the solution
so we watch on
the arid climate of our world scorched by our own infallibility
our race
the one we share as inhabitants of this earth
the one drawn as a cartoon image of itself
drawn in its own image
redrawn, modernized

The traveller waits on the shores of our beach
He beckons to the shadows in the distance
He calls out, warmly
like a father to his son
He calls once more
He calls no more
The traveller waits

I wish to call out to the traveller
I wish to exclaim
'disguise not your battered soul'
I wish to comfort
But I cannot
I am in the distance
My limbs will not carry me in that direction

I am in the distance
amongst a flock of martyred guns

in our digital world, a blank text box is a blank page.
we need not think about what we will write
we need not think.
yet we are human.
I'm a fan of The Great Gatsby, so I included the obligatory "green light" reference.
I'd be interested to know who people think the Traveller is. There is no answer, only inference.
Writing for me is a way to record in a perceptible medium my feelings at a given moment; one of these feelings was actually how awesome the poetry of Sari Sups is. She's on Hello Poetry, check her out.

I actually wish I could write poetry in her style. But I can't - I can't rhyme either, I can only write in my own style. But I prefer reading hers.
As the world stands now,
Full of not what we need
Than what we need most,

Full of terrorist Arabs,
Perpetrating punctured civilization,
Of senseless Islam,
In the arsenal  state of ISIS,
Foolishly in ghastly infringement
Of the voiceless poor folks
With their solid foolery
They call the Islamic state,

At a time we need scientists,
In Einstein’s mental stature,
To open the microbes
And hopefully decimate,
Their germ of Ebola,
And her ancestors;
Aids and scrotal Cancer,

Arabs are all over Africa,
Preaching their chauvinism,
Which they call Islam, mental mire in extreme,
They grabbed and annexed North Africa,
They gave it Arabic name; The Maghreb,
Now the fountain of terrorism
And tomfoolery of religion
Devoid in dual logic
Of reason and humanity,
Converting Somali in to beehive,
Of al shabab and Al gaeda drones,
Killing the poor people,
For no reason nor emotion,

We need more Jews than Arabs in the Maghreb,
To convert Mauritania into New York,
And Somali into Moscow,
Egypt into Germany,
Tunisia into France
And Libya into Chicago,
For Africa needs Technology
And property for its people,
But not the religious sludge
In the likes of Islam, Buddhism and Christo-mania,

The world needs more Jews than Arabs,
For the sake of science,
Geo-space adventure,
Viable ideologies,
Like Marxism, reverse capitalism,
Bill Gatism and all of these stuff,
But not funny pieties of the Turban,
From peasants like Al Amin Mohammed,
The **** of Mecca before Adrenalin for Hajira,

Arabs better walk backwards,
To the days before in the antiques,
And revive Al Jebra, the glory of their past,
Make dhows and sail the world,
With Rubiyats of Omar Al Khayyam,
In their hands, burying their beards,
In the rubiyat of the wine and the ******,

The world needs more Greeks than English men,
For sake of succor from vacuum of logic,
We wallow in today,
To relish Aristotle, Plato and Socrates,
Homer and Hesiod,
For more Iliad and Odyssey,
Apology and Crito, Phaeto,
Alexander and Archimedes,
But not colonialism mongering
****** English men,
With no culture to sell,
Other than colonialism,
Infallibility of the queen,
Shakespeare’s fear of ***,
And Churchill’s mental deficiency,

We need more Russians than white Americans,
To entertain and astound the world,
With uniqueness of confidence,
And charm of moon visiting science,
With literary spark in the size of Leo Tolstoy,
Maxim Gorgi and Nikolai Gogol,
With the sweetness of cloaked dead souls,
To stune the world with political shrewdness,
In the fathom of Vladimir Putin,
Pricking capitalism from diurnal somnambulism,
We need more Germans than Italians,
For the sake of sense of reason
Positive aggressiveness,
Stern thought pattern,
Feasible ideology,
And systematic prudence,

We need more black Africans than Indians,
To carry forward the battle of civil rights,
Sports culture and heavyweight boxing,
To sire tough sires,
That can survive climate change,
But not Indians,
Opening shops all over,
Falling in love with corrupt powers,
For filthy sake of merchandizing freedom,

Wee need more Jews than Arabs,
To counter the spiral forces,
Of Chinese capitalism,
Caterwauling the world,
Into crazy whirlpool,
Of yellow civilization,
Making it thus fit,
To stop at stark truth,
That a dead Arab terrorist,
Is better than thoughts of democracy.
Nickols  Jun 2014
The fall.
Nickols Jun 2014
You look to me with such clarity.
A sense of durability,
with a dash of humility.

The impossibility, of the greatest infallibility.
Leaves me quaking from your all desirabilitys.

Tranquility, before the fall.
White hot, rush,
over the wailing-wall.

The infamous red curtain-call.
Entering the entrance hall:
urban sprawl, to reinstall
the purpose to this circus for all.

"I love you."

There I said it,
removing my bulletproof-vest.
What a relief,
from upon my chest.
Undressed flesh of my *******,
the indirect test, to attest your barest of virtue.

It's your turn, my love...
To return the favor.
Speak the words,
I know I'll savor.

"I love you.", say it with meaning.

"I love you.", prey for it while you're sleeping.  

"I love you.", lay with it while dreaming.

Know: I saw you trip and fall...
as if it was a variety show.
Even though, the desire to know, was still there.

I wanted you...

Nay,

I want you...
I wanted you,
to know,
I saw you take the fall.
I like rhyming.
Daniel Barlow  Jun 2010
Chelsea
Daniel Barlow Jun 2010
Parfait is most fitting,
Beautiful brown eyes glisten,
One perfect frozen night,
Indescribable powers upon you,
Magical chemistry shines through,
Forever in awe of your elegance,
So close to completion,
To be left only remnants,
Only memories,
Of smiles lay upon your face,
Love forever,
An eternal lasting trace,
You, I will never forget,
And us, I shall never regret,
Infallibility will never rest.
Never have I felt so devastated as how one person,
a man,
can treat someone,
a woman,
so violently;
in words,
by intended isolation,
by the very desecration of her womanhood,
by mirth of her infallibility,
by the devastation of her entire embodiment of life,
to be his 'perfect',
to be 'his'.
It is pretty clear that when 'NO' is screamed, from my lips,
it falls on deaf ears,
blind eyes can't see the fear in my face,
hard calloused hands can't feel my sensitive skin tremble and bruise.
What man cannot have,
the man will take what he wants anyway.
The Ego is a terrible, horrific, devastating manifestation of self, onto another.
Malia  Jul 2023
The Infallibility
Malia Jul 2023
I don’t believe in the 𝘪𝘯𝘧𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘣𝘪𝘭𝘪𝘵𝘺
Of love, of teenage love.

But you do.

When I’m around you,
When I’m 𝘵𝘢𝘭𝘬𝘪𝘯𝘨 to you,
All the doubts disappear.

But when it’s just me
I worry, 𝘸𝘰𝘳𝘳𝘺, 𝒘𝒐𝒓𝒓𝒚
That I’ll 𝘥𝘪𝘴𝘪𝘭𝘭𝘶𝘴𝘪𝘰𝘯 you,
I’ll 𝘥𝘪𝘴𝘢𝘱𝘱𝘰𝘪𝘯𝘵 you,
Because you thought
That we were made of steel.

You don’t 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸 that our chances are 𝘭𝘰𝘸
Of being high-school sweethearts
That make it to the other side.

You don’t 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸 that when I think of our 𝘧𝘶𝘵𝘶𝘳𝘦,
We part ways and come back again.
You don’t 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸 that I think steel melts
And then can be reforged.

I don’t 𝘬𝘯𝘰𝘸 if I want you to.

I feel so 𝘯𝘢𝘪𝘷𝘦 sometimes,
But I swear you’re even more 𝘯𝘢𝘪𝘷𝘦
Than me.

I want to protect you.

But I don’t believe in the 𝘪𝘯𝘧𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘣𝘪𝘭𝘪𝘵𝘺
Of love, of teenage love.

I don’t believe in 𝘪𝘯𝘧𝘢𝘭𝘭𝘪𝘣𝘪𝘭𝘪𝘵𝘺.

But I believe in 𝒖𝒔.
Hmm anxiety sure makes for good poetry

— The End —