Reading Edward Thomas in Taba

On phosphorescent greens my sons play golf.

Fat Russians float in scattered swimming pools,

their sleek wives moored at nearby parasols

(it’s cheaper here than Europe, or the Gulf).

Tonight – ‘authentic Bedouin cuisine’,

as cloned in each hotel along the coast;

for now, nothing to do but lie sunkissed

or snorkel in the teeming turquoise zone.


Why did I bring your book?  It seems absurd

to lodge in such a place with such a quiet

lone mind –

                  so finely tuned you overheard,

in slowly weathered haunts, their sober riot

of deep emotions; the rooted, English words

which fail me in the horrors of the Hyatt.

Published in HappenStance Envoy, 2013