I remember who I am

I remember who I am when I

celebrate someone else’s holy days

Rosh Hashanah. Eid. The Ploughing Festival.

You name it

They aren’t mine to have and to hold

to bake cakes for and invite family and friends with which to celebrate

or tire of all the work they necessitate

but they remind me

that I am alive

in tiny glimpses

to a world more foggy than clear

In pieces of bread and scattered rice and the bowings and candles of ceremony

I remember who I am

me, a grown up farmer’s daughter

whose nose burns at the sight of sun

ever the melancholy, longing for the God of peace, of kindness and well-being,

I honor you, stranger

and hold you in light on your holy days

How perfect!

As I encounter you

I can’t help but smile

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