Waiting for a Terrorist

by Lori Lou Freshwater


Tents staked in desert land, a muted building

of parched earth, in a thirty year old city with a napalm

birth, they wait among gravestones in the sand.


Gypsies don't roam, children play in dust, illusions

of home.  A woman teaches without books, invisible

unless sand floors turn black, turn into liquid money.


The thousand-mile wall holds. We want to go home,

not until they own oil or terrorists.  Nations clamor

for phosphate and fish, families live a barren existence.


In a London room an electric guitar screams Saharan

poetry across the street from a market waiting for sardines,

gathered from stolen sea.  Seven hundred miles from a Saharawi


woman who rations water for children too large for her breasts.  

Eighty miles away the sun has moved, a tourist turns her back

for a more exquisite angle, as ocean laps a canary island.

~Originally published in the Red Wheelbarrow Literary Magazine