Poem: The Grand Fete


Audio reading of The  Grand Fete:


At the Grande Fête everyone’s invited to
people start arriving by aerial gondola

Shape-changing twins arrive
dressed in tuxedos

Lady Godiva comes dressed
as a smudge-blotched charwoman

Historians come with inky thumbs
in suits made of parchment

Serenaders arrive on whiffles of song
neon red cummerbunds like those worn at the Vatican

Various woodland creatures arrive
in human disguise and no one’s the wiser

Orpheus comes with his head firmly on
wearing a snake costume since

that’s what bit Eurydice
and sent her to Hades

(he’s trying to reverse it)

Dressmakers priests pompous
diplomats aristocrats

arrive on gold bicycles
with playing cards in the spokes

A forest fire arrives dressed as a fireman
a drought totters in dressed as a skeleton

Even the End of the World
though he’s not been invited

Dressed as all and everyone
who ever walked the earth

but even
wiser and more beautiful

Then the Next World arrives
not long afterward

wearing the exact same Apocalyptic
costume but in reverse

Conversation bubbles
everyone dances the

standing-still vibration green dance of
everything living

Pretty soon distant stars come and
far constellations

Then the entire cosmos comes
just before dawn

and at one point (some say drunk)
turns inside-out completely

And we all land here as
naked as day

Alive at last in a new constitution
ethereally nourished by stream waters

direct from The Source
as well as

bowls of ambrosia and lotus flowers
floating in air

though air is no longer
it’s something else altogether

God’s Presence taking place
where our place is left vacant

and only song remains
trembling among

high boughs
of nothingness

12/1/08 (from Sparks Off the Main Strike)

About danielabdalhayymoore

Poet, artist, collagist, publisher, hoping to save a little bit of the world through ecstatic utterance... ordered in balanced lines and unpremeditated images...
This entry was posted in ABDAL-HAYY'S POETRY. Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Poem: The Grand Fete

  1. Umm Bilal says:

    Assalamu alaikum,
    W O N D E R F U L !!!! as fantastic as this whole existence is!
    Wassalamu alaikum


  2. Patrick says:

    whiffles of song!I love that,Daniel…hope you and yours are well


  3. orion2007 says:

    Nice. Really great food for a tired mind. Jazakallah Khair.

    Question: Is this poem about Genesis? The concepts remind me of monotheistic religion of Abraham but certain characters from Greek mythology are brought in? So, how does this work? Am I misinterpreting something?

    Kind Regards


  4. Dear Arzoo:

    Thank you for your thoughtful remarks and questions, a fine reward (and enough) for writing and posting…

    I think this poem is about God’s ultimate and total reality, here in this creation teeming with variety, time, history, tragedy, redemption, all those things and more… But not necessarily Genesis… more like apotheosis. Our concept that there’s no reality but Allah… (an ibn Arabi gloss on the Prophet’s stated teachings, and in no way either innovative nor contradictory, Ikhlas, Sincerity, that Allah is One, not born and not giving birth, and like Him is nothing.).

    Then your second question, or concern, and I’d say this: I’m a creature of western culture, though a Muslim now for more of my life than not a Muslim, becoming so at the age of 30, in 1970, in Berkeley, California, after the heydays. But I don’t feel constrained in my poetry to concentrate only on Islamic images or symbols or references, since Allah is Allah for all cultures and all times and places… so I can freely bring in Orpheus, as a figure in myth (NOT as a god, never), and readers will see that here, for example, is a moment of redemption, his head back on and striving to save his Laila (Eurydice). I think, for those who are willing, the best thing with my poems is to just go with them, let them eddy you, as the writing of them eddied me into various pools and cascades… (sorry, that’s how it is!). But I think you’ll find at the base of all of them, insha’Allah, an anchored Sufi Muslim concept…

    Blessings on you for your interest, and may your days be inspired and your mind not be tired…

    Regards in kind…


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