The muezzin hollers his song across the morning, alerting both those already alert, as well as those to be alerted, that the time is upon us.
The figure on the steps is not as still as first he seems - his lip trembles like a feather as the ants march across it.A wailing woman streaks, fog-like, along the blue-tiled wall, across the tiled pavement. The square is silent... till her baby cries. Stroking the child's cheek while she runs, the woman passes the figure rotting on the step. She averts her eyes. He was a good man.
Out and across the boundless space she darts, kitten heels clacking on the ceramic. A bubbling noise behind and out of sight slowly shifts to the familiar scream of police sirens.
Singing-out ʾadʿiyah in her mind, descant to the muezzin, she turns down a narrow ziqaq-lane into the souk and is lost within.
The low hum of bomber planes appears on the horizon of any ears to hear them, droning louder and nearer as the fabric of the city begins to tremble. This one woman, her unique act of defiance, has brought a swift and very final response.The scene goes quiet. Nothing stirs. The pause nears its end.