julli: to pray


The rhythm of life in Dakar is punctuated by prayer. In the waking hours of the morning, in the dawn, the call to prayer rings out from a minaret, somewhere, and reverberates in my half-awake state. The call, like a song, echoes in my afternoon classroom and across the city at dusk. Around these times, I sometimes see people knelt on prayer mats tucked in corners of sidewalks or classrooms. Sometimes I see my mother standing still on her mat, chin to her chest, eyes closed.


But it’s not like the city screeches to a halt at the call to prayer. Rather, it seems that people find quiet moments to steal away in the flow of the day. Then they roll up their mat and return to work or to school or to television, and the day goes on.

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