Istanbul

You deserve better.

You, with your chubby cooks pressing dolma into the hands of “skinny” Indian girls; take it, taste it, come back tomorrow!
You, with your warm garlic-perfumed mamas kissing cheeks & giving blessings like a gift.
You with your magic alleys filled with genie lamps and flying carpets.
You, who smile through hardship&poverty, drinking tea in delicate china almost too lovely to hold.

You, with your gelato that could rival Italy’s, with your warm bread dotted with toasted sesame.
You, with your frothy waves, ferry boats and blue seas, seagulls daydreaming in the sky.
You, with your orange sunlight, blue walls and white cotton candy clouds.
You, with air so pure and cotton so crisp, wrapping me in comfort not elsewhere found.

You, who didn’t get the prayers of Paris or the grief of Brussels.
You, who made few headlines and appeared on few news tickers.
You, who made no Facebook profile pictures or safety checks.
You, so good of heart, so wide of smile, so lacking in complaint, so content in your own perfect slice of the world.

You, who shield the homeless, robbed in your own home. Again.
You, who bled as the world watched & did nothing. Again.
You, who left your heart wide open, only to have it broken. Again.

You deserve better.

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