I miss the chimney smoke exuding everywhere.

How the grey overpowers the blue and creates a melange of nature versus broken civilization,

How discrepancies and injustices have become routine but more so,

how we feel obliged to be precautious when dealing with the system,

as though parents of a nagging child

that won’t stop crying in public transportation because all they see around

are the instinctively-repulsive scenes

of sexual assault.

But more so,

not the assualt that is repulsive as much as the surrender.

Her complexion is as muddy as her clouds but she is picturesque.

You still miss her long queues, you still miss the way he held you tightly without your own consent

How he forced himself upon you.

At first you were intrigued by the mere idea of belonging to someone else,
but intrigued lay closer to the side of fear.

Day after day with him, year after year with her, you grew your intrigue like your cacti, with little water to flower it with, but stringently and enduring it grew, proving its unlikelihood possible.

So when you were released from him, from her, you found little meaning in life.

Freedom and independence were soon words smudged by others as they relentlessly spit it into your mind in an attempt to make you believe.

So you look back at the lost days and you think, were things ever as grey? Wouldn’t you rather sacrifice color

And this is a disease my dear,

your little Stockholm syndrome got you down for months on end

You still want your beloved Cairo,

but it is not your hometown, it is not family, and it is not your loved one.

It will be a colorful reunion for minutes in the airport before it shifts to another grey streak from the very long wait at the baggage claim, to barely hailing an overpriced taxi, to almost getting home on time, and collapsing on your bed fidgeting with remote buttons realizing that the electricity is cut off and waking up to the noise of traffic at too late in the afternoon when the shops have only started opening.

It is too late

to love you,

you’re not my beloved,

you are, in essence,


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