ABU BAKR’S SISTER – IN – LAW
or, in full,
_The Background Story of
the Events Leading Up to
and Culminating in
the Solemn Proclamation by
the Bilateral Interfaith Dialogue Junta of
the Joint Declaration Enacted by
_the Inter-Hemispheric Commission on
the Occasion of
the 17th Centenary of
the Council of
the 13th Centenary of
_the Stoning of
_by Igor Slamoff_
_This prose poem is respectfully dedicated to[*]
The Right Reverend Rowan Williams,
Archbishop of Canterbury
[*] and in part inspired by
After exerting much psychological pressure, I finally succeeded in getting the Mandingo of Kampala, the Revered Patriarch of Ecumenical Elucubrations & Chairman of the Chrislamobudaism Foundation (based in North Korea) to disclose to me the story of the circumstances under which the Christian delegation was eventually willing to sign the Joint Declaration, although the draft submitted by the Muslim side had not been discussed at all, and the Christians found themselves reluctantly signing the unedited Muslim proposal.
But the circumstances were very stressful, despite the Emir’s hospitality. Several members of the Christian delegation had not had time to compose their nerves after the crash landing in the crocodile-infested swamp and their subsequent laborious extraction by Marine helicopters equipped with winches.
The Grand Shmoofty of Yemen finished swiftly reading the draft joint statement on behalf of all the Muslim representatives at the symposium, and there was a hush in the plenary room.
After a brief pause, the Metropolitan Patriarch Mstislav IV of Irkutsk, who was chairing the meeting. said: “Very well, the next point on the agenda is, um … certain enquiries from our side about what you mean exactly when you use certain remarkably elastic, not to say pathologically indefinable terms as are, for example …”.
At this point the Metropolitan Patriarch was brusquely interrupted by the Wali of Kanpoor, who raised a point of order and was immediately seconded by the fiendishly secretive and extraordinarily devout Abd-er-Rahmen Oziguchi, the Vice-Chairman’s spokesman. The Vice-Chairman himself was curiously absent from this morning’s session for undisclosed reasons.
That afternoon the moon set at 3:40 at precisely the same instant as a flock of wild geese flew raucously overhead.
When the clerics foregathered for the afternoon session, the Metropolitan Patriarch Mstislav IV of Irkutsk nervously, and in a tremulous tone, announced that there had been a slight adjustment to the agenda and we would immediately pass over to the next point without further discussion of the Muslim side’s draft of the Joint Declaration that had been read to them at the morning session. After all, we couldn't debate EVERY SINGLE POINT, can we now, and remember, we’ll need entire WEEKS to formulate the Joint Declaration on the Unity of the Godhead, which was a VERY important point, in view of the eschatological debate that had consumed for months the attention of the entire Kuwaiti submarine corps.
Besides, we were suddenly short of time, because the Transport Workers Union, despite the Emir’s rather torpid attempts at reconciliation, had announced a general strike for the following month, and trying to rearrange all those flights would be exhausting. .
The Methodist Archbishop of Katanga rose to protest: “Revered Fathers, Gentlemen, this is highly irregular. Clause 3 of our Covenant plainly states that sequencing parameters of terminological confabulation cannot be relinquished unless a plenary vote has yielded a collective decision by a supermajority. However, I see that currently no voting quorum is present, so no decision is possible until the committee ….. “
The whole afternoon session was devoted to procedural wrangling and the issue was postponed to the next day.
However, during the night, unknown terrorists descended from the mountains and kidnapped the Christian delegation at the hotel where it was staying, and you know the rest.
The Muslim delegation had no trouble because we were housed at the luxurious guest house of the Emir’s secret police.”
After hearing the Mandingo of Kampala’s narrative I cleared my throat and said:
So, then your draft of the statement goes on to assert the following: “We Muslims do not allow aggressive proselytising in our midst.” -- Well, howzabout some MEEK proselytising in your midst? Would you be willing to put up with a modicum of some seriously meek proselytising in your midst? Would that be doable?
We Muslims do not allow that either. Your proselytising in our midst destroys our faith.
Well, YOUR proselytising in OUR midst destroys OUR faith TOO!
Calling Christianity a “faith” is a bit of a stretch, isn’t it? Monkeypig!
How dare you imitate the Gestapo? We bought the entire Gestapo legacy including literary rights back in the 1960s! Ach du lieber!
[Here the transcript breaks off]