Tuesday, December 13, 2016

The Discreet Charm of Fascism

by ibrahim el-sayed, from  أحد عشر كلبا (eleven dogs)
The spring of 2012 feels painful with its small yellow flowers that
fill the hospital garden
Dusty Christmas trees seem smaller
and Made in China
Crimson decorations have
the smell of strawberries
overlain by a sticky white film of mould

This is how my girlfriend fears her body; her non-aligned body:
an entirely unreliable ally in love’s fray
The fascism that flourished in the schools now storms the streets
The lizards roam the lanes
and the state is ghosts that press down on our thin fingers
Military marches summon memories of the Happy Fifties:
Shadia’s pink cheeks, movie melodrama cribbed from
La Dame au Camelias
The new editions are distorted, tanks and other tracked vehicles
occupy the street.

In the background, mahragan music: national anthem to a great horde of lighter sellers, statesmen, others

We shall leave the city behind us
making for the desert
The taxis are full
The railways lines cut
We will not leap into the river.

A continuous swimming within,
and the ugly cement wavebreaks
block the view on either side
The shoreline at our backs
is full of gelatinous bodies
pulsing in the dark:
surprised by a cold wave.

No comments:

Post a Comment