Fez, Morocco

The crisp, fragrant air on its gentle path
through a riddle of shutters and cobbles
sounds of the street are wraiths on the breeze
long lost to the fall of the sweet night

Night leads the birds back across the horizon
roosting in burnt, rusted trees till the next dawn
the curious scent of incense and dust
is all that remains now of the day past

A shadow lingers ahead, eyes down
waiting for the hour of rest to arrive
black hair matted with the sweat of labour
hands painted with the tint of the sunlight

Doors lay ajar into the hidden courtyards
a maze of secret palaces behind the tall facade
the geometric haze of tiles and wood and metal
melting into one blur of dried out colour

A stream of water singing in the distance
with a chorus of women and playing children
the orchestra of noise lives in an encore
timed to the beat of the calls from the towers

Remnants of fruits, the seeds that can’t grow here
strewn across the darkest of the streets
where the copper pots were beaten earlier that day
in the blazing workshop which still spills upon the cobbles

The sun is now a dream of the distant daytime
the heat still a permanent fixture on the fleeting canvas
a burning, bleeding sky suturing its last wound
as the clouds dissipate into the ink night

The silence is heavy in the evening air
only to be cut down by a distant whisper
or four paws padding gently away from this place
back to a secret palace, where the sun will never disappear