"Dead Day"

Safaa Fathy


Fleeing the Dead Sea

evaporating from this Rub'al Khali *

the day fell into a black hole of the universe


the watch's hand turns in time's gyres

where The Thing has frozen on the lips

on a slogan's repetitive echo tumbling into eyeball void

Is the day a year, a mirage or dust?


returning from the heart of the city to the same question

it hides from my face when I'm about to find it

I search for its shape behind the doors

I listen closely to overhear it

isn't there a life for each name?

That is

in the morning of Time we will walk at our own pace

then die in wooden boats on the Nile

we shall plunge into the light of a dead star in the

galaxy to be reborn into another image of a living being


                                                                 Cairo , 12 March - Italy, 6 August 2012

* Rub’al Khali is a desert in Saudi Arabia said to be one of the most arid and most dreadful places in the world.

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Author Bio: Safaa Fathy was born in Egypt; she has been a director of program at the International College of Philosophy in Paris. A poet, filmmaker, and essayist, her most recent films are Mohammad Saved from the Waters, Derrida’s Elsewhere, and a film poem Nom à la mer. Jacques Derrida, with whom she wrote the book Tourner les mots au bord d’un film, prefaced her plays Terreur and Ordalie.