I thought there was more life
where traveling stars could whisper
as they rose over desert
or broke through smog above Cairo.
I tried to get lost in crowds
watching yellow tanks grind by,
my body suspended like a target.
with plastic shields
that splintered in the racket.
Everything in decline—
when was it new?
Of course nothing worked,
Isn't this one form of resistance?
No traveler went unharmed
unless too poor.
Even in Tahrir all was hearsay,
There were no maps,
no dictionary of the new gestures.
(Published in Hotel Amerika — 2018)