Of spectators and (other) tourists

Midday, with audio


Behind this parking lot’s stone fringe,

A tide of tourists, restlessly milling,

Everywhere, and from everywhere,

Chatting in Mandarin or Spanish,

Arabic or English or Greek.


Always the click of cameras or cell phones,

Identical muggings for identical shots,

Endless closed-off interactions, seeming alive

Only to each other. Offstage but not forgotten,

The braying of camels and vendors.


Ahead, half-unnoticed, the pyramids,

The unseen Nile, and Cairo’s 30 million.

Like golden sand and pristine sky,

inaudible amid the tourist din; remembered

as cinematic backdrop.



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