Iljas Baker

Iljas Baker

Iljas Baker was born in Scotland and is a graduate of the universities of Strathclyde, Aberdeen and Edinburgh. He now lives in Nonthaburi, Thailand where he is a university lecturer and a consultant editor. He writes poetry, essays, and book reviews and is working on a novel. He recently recommenced writing poetry after a long hiatus. His poetry has been published in numerous issues of the Bosphorus Review of Books and in the anthology We Humans. Two poems have been accepted for the forthcoming anthology A Kaleidoscope of Stories.


This is what will happen now
they told him that spring night
briefly interrupting
his reading of Montaigne

he placed his finger on the page
and looked up coldly

greatness of soul is knowing
how to circumscribe and set oneself in order

he read when alone again

this is what will happen now
they told him that spring night
the past is dead
truth and justice will be better served

In the morning a final fajr
a brief zikr and then exile

two wives, three children, one grandchild
waited anxiously downstairs by the cars
slowly and sadly they left the Dolmabahçe Palace

they followed the curve of the Bosphorus
crossed the Galata Bridge
passed the mosque of Beyazit
and went through the Edirne Gate

at Çatalca the not yet fabled Orient Express
was waiting to take them to Europe

there the last caliph
read Montaigne
wearing a fez

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Poetry in this post: © Iljas Baker
Published with the permission of Iljas Baker