Friday, January 01, 2010

Call to prayer

Clean. Nose, mouth, ears, hands, feet. The plastic tessolet filled with water sat under the tree in the courtyard and several times a day my religious friends would perform their ablutions before unfurling their plastic prayer mats and laying them on the concrete paving stones to pray.

Then, stand, hands clasped, kneel, forehead to the ground, stand, kneel, hands together, words whispered silently to God.

I told one friend

'I think God smiles when you do that'.

The last time I saw Maze, was on the rooftop courtyard where he and Sidy's friends were recording Sidy's songs. After the recording was finished, Maze took a moment, as darkness descended, to walk off by himself on the other side of the roof. Overhead, the fruit bats were beginning to emerge from the giant mango trees and quietly make their way across the twilit sky. Maze's yellow shirt billowed a bit in the breeze as he turned his back to us, turned towards Mecca, turned his attention, towards God.

Later, saying goodbye for what turned out to be the last time, I remember seeing the yellow of his shirt as I leaned in for a final, formal, kiss on the cheek.

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