you ask, how was philly?
i say, i didn't know just how good
until i had to leave.
here is an ode or a painting,
hung behind the silver slivers
of an old fashioned science fiction
gown. fitting only for a diva
or a dalida, a goddess, or more.
here is another string of secrets
tied together on a shoe lace
and followed by a friendly cat
down the length of an inspirational corridor.
what an ashraf is- all the secret
hiding places in a car
for mints, gums, glasses, gloves,
tissues, cds, mirrors, fragrances
and special body butters.
what an ashraf is- the effects
of a transformation from christmas pj's
to hair gel and a soft sweater
with contact lenses and leather gloves.
what an ashraf has- if he blushes,
the most beautiful brown eyes
ever given to a boy by his mother
and just enough attitude
to warrant a guilty smile.
what an ashraf has- a collection
of royal blue and gold bottles
of shampoo, conditioner and
shower gel neatly arranged
in the corner of the shower
in the back of the bathroom
with the loose light switch
from too many rough starts
to too many heavy days.
what an ashraf does- offers hot tea
before breakfast and asks how i like
the collection of marie howe poems
i've barely skimmed the surface of.
what an ashraf does- bites his nails
when no one is meant to be watching
then catches me staring and stops.
neither of us smiling, neither needing to.
instead, we comment on the cat.