The Belly Dancer

Right on the evening of my enchantment

Heated up by a bonfire –an outdoor party went on

In came a fine belly dancer

Nearly stripped—with charms on her waist

And had danced dead all the cobras of orient

she had a neck like an antique vase—

fired in ancient kilns and varnished by kisses sweet

her eyes had trapped all flames she had danced around

and now they burnt with a fierce glow

and as she danced

her lips like poppies soft

chanted opium incantations

that had us all in a trance

her waist flashed in the firelight

giving it a caramel sheen

with every pulsating move

I spotted a beauty mark

on the softness underneath her breast.

her adorned ankles defied dust and encircled all

she was the center of a whirlwind

taking us all with it

and her legs, her thighs were time defying pillars

of an old forgotten civilization

a hallway to a temple –dedicated to the worship of beauty.

we all became pilgrims that night  

and her navel —the altar of a holy land

Nameless Island

a labyrinth of eroded gullies

lead us into the open sea

the sun on our face

and water birds over our heads

leaving our clothes in a trail at shore

we went in for a swim

spread across the blue waters


a fishing boat cruised by

and we begged the fishermen

“please give us a ride out west

there is a nameless island out there

the dwellers of the island they say

dance and play music all day”


the astonished men in amazement asked

“but what will you wear

your clothes lie empty at shore”

“we will not need any covering” we said

in that island they say there is nothing to hide

Dance For Me

Dance for me my dear

I will provide the music

I will strum my heartstrings

to the joy of your feet


Dance for me my dear

I will sing till my voice breaks

squeezing out melodies in pain

to the praise of the god in your waist


Dance for me my dear

I have abandoned the bottle

I am enthralled by your eyes

who needs a drink?

the wine is drunk on you


Dance for me

be raw be sensual and shameless

tear down your clothes like David

before my gaping kingdom


Dance off Salome at her own party

I will give you my severed head

slurring praises of your waist

upon a silver platter

Dancing for Pennies

When I left work today
My leather bag heavy on my hand
And my tie loosened
I passed by the market path
Where a young man was dancing for pennies
Music was playing from a shop close by
And on those borrowed sounds
He made his day’s quarter
On bare feet and threadbare shirt
a smile on their face he carried on
Almost kicking over his bowl of pennies
And making everyone around beam with smiles
I stood a while and then walked off — smiling

I thought as I boarded an old crowded bus
If only I’d be half as glad doing my job
Like that young man dancing for pennies
Another man carefully chains carts to a metal reel
Whistling as everyone goes about their business
And I look outside my window
They look like passing trees
Beautiful glad trees they are.
Dancing in the wind
Dancing for pennies
I begin reading sign posts
On the side of buildings we pass by
and fall asleep.