“It was cool, with that sweet dry freshness of the desert air,
on the patio just outside the room.
The many birds sang, to left and right, above and around,
with the occasional caw of a crow.
The clouds were yellow-pink against the blue of the dawning sky.
From deep in the hotel came the sound of machinery, like the purring of a cat.
Then slowly the city came to life; cars were heard with the occasional tooting of a horn.
Kemal came out and took me up to the balcony,
to see the sun rising above the Old City,
a golden globe above the golden stone of ancient walls.
Beauty and sacredness had come together.”