For Isa Muazu
by E. E. Jones

Think of his starved hand
Reaching for England
As they stretchered him
Towards the exit: his small wrist
Helpless in the terminal
Darkness, and his thin fingers,
Through which Justice slipped.
If you could stand and listen
To his thin lips whispering freedom
Like a password – his sole prayer
To breathe our English air –
Then would you hold that hand,
I think you would
If it were up to you, though
England’s grim-eyed guards
Say otherwise, and ranks of hobnailed
Headlines stand behind them.
Would you cast off the newsprint’s
Mailed glove, to save a dying man?
If you could choose – I say
You’d take his hand and hold it fast,
Not letting go. Handfast,
An English word.