copyright 2020 Under the Veil

Taif | الطائف

Grey-haired apes latch onto mountain-

tops, climb through tenacious fog.

Out-of-season Ferris wheels push through

ancient stone in tangerine, fuchsia:

here, a strange garden

blooms before Taif.

Lofty rosa damascena permeate

through thick-bellied clouds,

we pass through mountain veil,

to roadside fruit market, rosewater distillery:

heavy pomegranates wait by silken peaches,

clusters of the blackest grapes billow in between.

Mango syrup leaks from mouth-corners;

my daughter’s chin is fragrant, gold.

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