(In memory of Rzouga)
There he sat, the sick old communist,
Basking in the warm and scentless smell
That filled every corner of his flat.
Sitting on his sofa with folded legs,
His thoughts were scattered amid the unstapled pages
Of a photocopied manual of theatrical techniques.
There he sat with his round glasses
Hanging dangerously from his nose,
Like the sword of Damocles from its horsehair.
It reminded his visitors
That age and
The tender smell of coffee invaded the room,
Warm and delicious like a soft winter slumber.
It slowly danced to the scratchy sound of the aging radio
Playing an old French tune with roaring r’s,
With roaring R’s, R’s… R’s.
And outside !
The stout wind of El Kef riding a cloudy clime
Waltzing with the age-old rhyme
And shaking from time to time the windows and the French door
Was trying to break into the room and take away
The old communist and his unstapled book his dusty scars
And his long-dead dReam