Ancient Jiriziah is not a place
on any map

but its minarets jut up in spires across the
sky and its alleys of camphor and teak

reek of antediluvian atmospheres

and we somehow remember its light and
rose-tinged shades and long to

return to it and see it at the next
turn in the road

Jiriziah of the flashing doorways

Jiriziah of the interconnected gardens of
begonia and bougainvillea camellia and

until really it might all be in the
coil of rose petals as they

emerge from the bud

a botanical rather than historical or
archeological reality

Dream of return inside the incoiled bud before blooming

and the slaked camels in silhouette resting from their
caravan and a shiver of silver silk through the
marketplace and women’s covered forms rushing

through darkening streets? All a

pre-blossoming memory or
interuterine dream?