Bird’s eye view

9 Feb


Step through the red and green

Stained glassed arched windows

To the sand brushed mud brick blocks

See the white spiral designs dance on its exterior

like an Arab brides painted henna hands.

Hover over the 5thor 6th floor in vertigo

of mans first sky scraper.


Through this height, peer down

upon the labyrinth winding narrow streets below

To see women dressed as black crows

Abayas and hijab glide to and fro

Then the extinct Sanaanian red appears

like a lost Cardinal she comes and goes

Black is the color of chastity?

Or the color of the Gulf?


Here man buys a woman for a night or a life time

Give him just your body and damn your life

Better sell your soul to the highest bidder

The 3 S rule applies, keep it: superficial, sweet and sexual.

“Woman’s lib is between her legs and not her ears.” they say

And a female pimp is a “best friend.”


On Thursdays men congregate in their rooms

reserved for the khat, the view and the chew.

The wealthy speak of Al-Qaeda

as their shaking hands reach for the bottle of Shamlan

Discussing the dwindling foreign investment

they ask “is Yemen a failed state?”

Some answer “Is it even a country?” Lost in a dull daze,

the chaos of war, has imposed its absurdity.

Hopeless they chew on their impotency.


Expats enter and conversations in

German, French, and English.

This is expat wasteland: From Australia to the Philippines,

from Spain to Somalia.

From an NGO to the UN, a diplomat or a thief?

Secret agents all indeed.

Helping all but only themselves.

Here an elite back home an unknown

Solipsistic pawns of a governments game,

Another Jack Daniels to soothe the soul

Until their next appointment


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