caravan

byravenspeak©

a caravan glides through mirages
less than a day away
dust a swirling illusion
dancing above the noon's heat

narrowed eyes
wrinkled against the sun
know the ways of sand and wind
read the currents and smile

sounds come later
sifting themselves through fantasy
faint enough to be imagined
a bell dangling from a thick neck

one bell becomes two
three then a chorus
and underneath the brass
the blaring of beasts

noble and tired they stride
muffled foot follows muffled foot
slap flat down on the sand
desert puffs and a world shakes

next to the weighted loads
hiding in swirled pastel cloth
dark skinned with eyes darker still
their keeper-companions walk

the woman awaits the arrival
teeth white behind open lips
the gold earring in her nose
a captured fallen star

with others behind veils
her tongue begins to trill
as each recognizes hers
and welcomes his return

many that night lie beneath tents
bathing bodies in oil
while outside tethered beasts
on knobby knees rest and dream

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