The Desert.

I keep dreaming of Egypt,
wishing to be back
beneath the blistering sun
and searing sand
slaving over bricks, building
temples to idols not my own,
cursing every seemingly
god-forsaken step
towards what seems
to me to be
a broken-promised land.

How can I rejoice?
How can I be glad?
I weep.
Folding my hands like the baking paper
my Mother used to line
cake tins with before birthdays.
I stamp my feet
longing for the deep
hollow echo of hard wood floors
just east of the city.

I sit down by the grey river of road
that flows noon and night
alongside my house
in still motion
and lament my Egypt,
embarrassingly unaware of the land
to the right of the Euphrates,
on the left bank of the Nile,
that awaits.

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