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Poem: Khaki Beyond the Mazari Palm

Books & Poetry

Love and exotica against a backdrop of war is the theme of this week’s Poet’s Corner contribution from Martha Landman.

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Khaki Beyond the Mazari Palm

Here, when the mountains
are capped with snow
the night breeze sings ghazals
on the plains.

On summer nights
lovers lie on home-spun carpets
spread on dirt berms
they feast on pistachios
and pomegranates
drink goat’s milk and listen
to the harps and the flutes
the herdsmen on the valley floor.

Behind dust curtains
children are twilled
in cotton cloth,
desert storms,
IEDs and hand grenades
fight holy wars
at night, the wind howls
across the desert.

When this war is over
I want to visit your butcher shops,
buy flowers in Kabul,
drink mulberry juice from the well
at Tang-e Gharu Gorge,
inhale the mountain smoke
and find myself a troubadour.

Martha Landman lives in Adelaide after 15 years in north Queensland. Her work has appeared in online journals and anthologies in Australia, the UK, US and South Africa. She is a member of Friendly Street Poets. Details of her chapbook collection “Between Us”, which was released last month in the Ginninderra Press Picaro Poets series and which today’s poem is from, can be found here.

Readers’ original and unpublished poems of up to 40 lines can be emailed, with postal address, to Submissions should be in the body of the email, not as attachments. A poetry book will be awarded to each accepted contributor.

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