Red these deserts – and free at last we roam;
But we are exiles from our fathers’ home.
Listen to me, as when you heard your father
Sing long ago the song of other sands –
Listen to me, and then in chorus gather
On this frequency, as we cross these lands.
From lone oases hid in sandy canyons
Atmospheres divide us, and cold of space –
Yet still the blood is strong, my dear companions,
And we in dreams ride at a camel’s pace.
We shall not tread again the wide and sandy plain
Where naught but night protects us from the sun
Nor gather in the souk to bargain once again
Returning to our tents when trading’s done.
When last from great Damascus we had banish’d
The infidels crusading through our lands
We did not know our peaceful time had vanish’d
Corrupted by the oil beneath the sands.
And so we fled, and insha’Allah have found
A desert world where we may roam at last.
But still we turn, when calls to prayer sound
To Mecca, to the homeland of our past.
(Originally posted on Making Light)