Nubians Contemplate Lake Nasser Behind the High Dam at Aswan
by Norbert Hirschhorn
They stand on concrete pylons,
pinions of steel, imagining landmarks
they can no longer see: acacias,
date palms, orange groves, millet rows,
wattled homes painted with stories of Haj,
(Haram al – Sharif, the black Kaaba).
And the graves — sancta sanctora —
of parents, saints, children lost early. Only
the water, the unruffled water, spreads
forever, drowning out laughter beneath
the growl of turbines where
salvos of power turn air into ozone. From
the hills, from the sands, small
eddies billow: land, oh land.