Herat Market

George Moore

Sandals left here for a pair of holy boots
some foreigner wore across the Khyber going

east from Greece.  No one knows the months
on the road, the long trail a common route

with train only as far as Tehran. The opening
of a new world, older than any.   And then

the desert subterrain the masked women of the world,
crossing into invisibility. Here in Herat a dollar buys

a beat up pair of old lowrider boots, my feet
gleeful, the reprieve, from the road in sandals

and tennis shoes, gummed with the heat of Greece,
the sand of its beaches. I wish I still had those shoes,

my feet would travel back into middle youth,
and find comfort in the future. Silk road runner,  

in markets where the world mingles gold and dun
with turquoise, and mirror-eye embroidery.  

And nothing discarded, not those old boots
worn through, not a string or a hand's span

of cloth. The recycling of the self long before
I knew the world would end, or feet be born again.