The sign says “Meals on Jesus” and a man in a suit is waiting,

dark and desolate against the blankness of Skid Row

where no air moves and no light rests.

This heat speaks: “Get a job. Quit drinking.”

And then in the blank desolation of Skid Row,

a prophet on a bicycle lets out a wail, distorted

in such a heat. Get a job, quit drinking,

I think. He stands anointed with garbage,

distorted. The prophet on the bicycle is wailing

“Allah.” The voice lurches drunkenly heavenwards,

scours my heart of its garbage.

“Allahu akbar,” a police raid on my soul.

“Allah,” lurching drunkenly heavenwards

(I have no language for this kind of devotion).

“Allahu akbar” is a police raid on our souls

a call to prayer, a call for there to be prayer, for there to be.

I have no language for any kind of devotion.

Earthbound or ascending, I can hear only

this call to prayer, this call for there to be prayer, this for there to be.

The sign says “Meals on Jesus.” I’m waiting.

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