Egyptian Nights

by Ilan Braun (Le Tour-du-Parc, Brittany, France)

Too often, my tired soul filled with doubts
Resumes its journey back to far-away Egypt
How it takes delight to find again the deep and burning nights
Of ancient Egypt
Yes, on the Nile’s shore my soul is feasting
On lentils and meat
On sweet and forbidden fruits
And in the starry darkness appears a beautiful veiled woman
Singing a wild and sensuous song
And dropping her white robe on the silvery dust
Her brown eyes stare at me and beg for me
Her red mouth half opened
And she stretches her arms
While the tent’s sides are shutting at twilight
The Egyptian desire holds me very tight
And forges in my body and heart
Chains stronger than iron
Consenting slave seeking his master’s approval
My desire is a treacherous goddess
And my soul bends its forehead, touching the mire
While high above are lamenting the Angels

Ilan Braun is a retired French journalist who wrote for L’Arche. A poet, writer, painter and amateur historian on the Holocaust and post-war Jewish clandestine immigration to Israel, he has lived in Israel and Australia and visited over 30 countries.

You can read more of his work in Labyrinthe poétique: De la terre au ciel (Publibook, Paris, 2009) and in English (“The Oak of Tears”) in Under One Canopy: Readings in Jewish Diversity, edited by Karen Primack (Kulanu Inc. Silver Spring, MD. 2003).

For more information about his work, visit:

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