John I. Blair
Navel of the Middle East,
Home of Scheherazade
And Haroun al-Rashid,
Of art, science, wisdom,
Violence and bloodshed.
The oldest books, the oldest laws
Were written on the Tigris plain,
Where Mesopotamian fields
Have danced in dusty haze
Since history was inscribed
With sticks on mud bricks.
The tablets and the parchments tell
How every conqueror since Sennacherib,
Nebuchadnezzar, Hulagu and Tamerlane
Strode merciless, arrogant,
Through ravaged temples, palaces,
Mosques and souks, and piled skulls high.
How will they remember us?
©2003 John I. Blair