How Is It I Came to Be Summed Up As I Am Now

How is it I came to be summed up as I am now?

Did the carbon in me pirouette through    

cedar, a sleek fish, diamonds — or cities as ancient as Cairo or Damascus?

Were selections of me once fire,

doused by pails then handfuls of water?

I confess, this enquiry interests me more than

the tall tales of ancestors

that fill books I have read…  

And Lear leaves me unmoved.  

If there is such a thing as dharma

is it then the arithmetic of these thousand sources?

My fate then altering with each meal, each shed hair and kiss,

these essences whipping through my open body.

Moez Surani is the author of two poetry collections, Reticent Bodies and Floating Life.