"Ramadan in Dunkin Donuts" by Adnan Onart

June 16, 2016

"Ramadan in Dunkin Donuts" by Adnan Onart

From his asking about the time
and double-checking his watch,
I understood:
he was about to break his fast.
Selamün Aleyküm, I said,
the only Arabic I knew
for all practical purposes.
Aleyküm Selam, he replied.
He was setting his table:
two donuts, one Chocolate Glazed,
the other Boston Kreme
and a thick lentil soup
he had apparently brought
from the grocery store
across the street.
Do you want to sit down
and share?

I thanked him, no.
Aren't you fasting?
I explained:
my high blood pressure,
my medication.
He pointed to one of the donuts:
Still, he said, let's share.
The collapsing Twin Towers,
the beheaded hostages,
and the jumpy look on people's faces
hearing my name.
We already do, I said.

Adnan Adam Onart
Boston, MA. 2005

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is the co-host of True Talk, a global affairs talk show on WMNF in Tampa. She grew up in Kuwait.

is the creative director at Affinis Labs. He was previously the co-host of the Al Jazeera America show, The Stream. He’s a playwright, and a first-generation Pakistani-American.

is a PhD student at Columbia University studying Arabic and Comparative Literature.

is a professor of Middle East History at California State University in San Marcos. He has also taught in Turkey and Spain.

is a former senior program officer in the Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding at the United States Institute of Peace. She is a professor of Conflict Resolution Studies at NOVA Southeastern University.

is a poet. He lives in Boston, Massachusetts, where he is an active Muslim member of a Unitarian Universalist congregation.

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