All the world is sleeping – hush!
Four rivers of Eden;
Hiddekel, Pison, Gihon, Euphrates.
Adamu’s garden, a woman picking fruit
in the cool of evening,
unfathomed darkness of stars.
Four rivers of Al Jazirah;
Colap, Kharbur, Al Furat, Nahr Dijla.
Ashurbanipal’s garden, orchard and well,
maiden awaiting her lover’s sweet song.
Did he arrive? Shrikes are hunting
through the olive groves, spearing
nightingales on branches.
Jahannam’s four rivers;
salt-tears, urine, diarrhoea, blood.
Zeki Bay’s garden of knives.
Women cooking grass. Children
licking moisture from stones.