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This poem is taken from PN Review 152, Volume 29 Number 6, July - August 2003.

Four Poems John Gallas

The Man Who Went the Other Way Down the Golden Road to Samarkand

It must have been another life,
but I remember I met them oh
somewhere on the road between Qasr-E-Shirin and Chah-I-Surkh.
I trotted backwards with them for a while for company
and wondered at their purpose.

I dozed on the sofa.
My book slipped.
My soul wound out of my mouth
like a white shirt in a breeze


and wished me away.
I asked them:
`Such a big, bundled, bouncing, bell-banging bunch;
where, pray, have you come from?'

And they answered:
`From old Baghdad the Beautiful, Fat Sir:
...


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