Atef Khaled: The Tower Mirage

 

 

She lives on the twelfth floor

where there lives too

her wise fleet fingers

her grey hair

her sixty years.

 

The tower has six lifts

three to the right of the lobby

and marble like ivory

gleaming damply

with daylight dwindling

till shadows swallow

stealing footfalls

and three lifts to the left.

 

In wait are doormen.

He makes before them

a veil, a veil

behind them

and slips within

with all of twenty-eight years.

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Robin Moger Translates Salah Abdessabour

The Daybook of Bishr the Barefoot

Abu Nasr, Bishr bin al-Harith, sought out debate and discussion and heard all that was said and so inclined to mysticism. And one day he was walking through the market when, taking fright at the people there, he removed his sandals and slipped them beneath his arms and set off running through the sunbaked stones and sand, and none could keep pace with him. This was in the year 227 AH.

Leopold Müller, A barefoot man in robes running while holding a stick, 1878. Source: Wikipedia

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