Pleistocene Reliclisten

The color of my mind is silence. Wind
through hollow trees and over river beds
of sand and gravel. Seedless thistle heads
adorn the broken teeth that lately grinned
from bleaching skulls on tundra prairies. Dusk
turns air to lavender and earth to grey.
A gap in western clouds; a single ray,
a glimpse of red that glitters on my tusk.

The thunder of my hooves is silent. Sky
fills every crevice in my cranium.
I wait, immobile, for the rain to come
and pool like blueness in my empty eye,
my staring socket, hollow ivory bone
a frame for wooden shaft and fluted stone.

by Tiel Aisha Ansari

Photo by David Rifkin Copyright 2009

Tiel Aisha Ansari is a Sufi, martial artist, and computer programmer living in the Pacific Northwest. Her work has appeared or is forthcoming in several print and online venues including Islamica Magazine, Mezzo Cammin, The Lyric, Raintown Review, and the VoiceCatcher anthology from Portland Women Writers. Her poetry has been featured on Prairie Home Companion and MiPoRadio. She is the author of the poetry collection Knocking from Inside, published by Ecstatic Exchange. You can visit her online at

Table of Contents    Next Poem    Guidelines