The Sounds I Can Hear Outside a 1591 Mosque Before the Call to Prayer in a Hidden Part of Istanbul, Turkey
No words out of the man I ask permission to write.
(He only points to his mouth and smiles.)
A murmuring old man, the clip clop of shoes arriving to pray.
Turkish that I do not understand, but sounds like poetry.
Silence in certain places.
The howl of the train.
Children upon children, happy voices.
The plane above, the cloud it passes through.
The birds making nests and other beautiful moments.
Looks and glances.
My own voice asking “Avet, Hayir?” to sit and write.
The sound of a car honking to more children.
The buzz of a door opening.
Another honk of impatience.
A rustle of a plastic bag.
A deep sound in the distance I cannot recognize.
The color of paint, the sound of color.
I hear wrinkles on faces unfold when I speak their language.
Jingle of change, quiet shoes slowly moving, carefully exploring.
The buzz of flies, the onomatopoeia of their movement.
A closer plane.
A piece of plastic turning over.
Leaves moving in the wind.
Traffic on a narrow street, the squeal of a car’s brake.
A close conversation pass.
Avet, avet, avet, avet, avet, avet from a man with a plastic bag.
The hum of a vacuum.
Keys and shoes passing.
The wind, where it travels, its history.
A fly walking carefully like the man walking carefully,
the fly is without shoes and quieter.
Silence in conversation, then it begins again, his voice loud like a whistle.
Another plane with more visitors who will be changed by visiting.
The roll of a baby cart.
Conversations through a gate.
Water being drunk, hands being cleaned, feet being washed.
A cat, angry, meows near by.
The pause before the call to prayer.
Later, I will hear it roar across Istanbul.
This work by Scott Stewart is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.