Wiam El Tamami

This July

This July

Wiam El-Tamami Granta, 31 October 2013 I can only say, there we have been: but I cannot say where. – T. S. Eliot, ‘Burnt Norton’ I can tell you about my sister’s balcony, overhung with old trees that quiver with birdsong in the morning, a rare treat in this city. I can tell you about her sofa, lump by lump; about the dining table chair she sat in most days to work, an orthopedic cushion strapped to its back.
This July

This July

Wiam El-Tamami Granta, 31 October 2013 I can only say, there we have been: but I cannot say where. – T. S. Eliot, ‘Burnt Norton’ I can tell you about my sister’s balcony, overhung with old trees that quiver with birdsong in the morning, a rare treat in this city. I can tell you about her sofa, lump by lump; about the dining table chair she sat in most days to work, an orthopedic cushion strapped to its back.
Cairo: September 2014

Cairo: September 2014

WIAM EL-TAMAMI 28 JANUARY 2015 I left Cairo on 19 April 2014. I was so glad to have left, so relieved and slightly disbelieving that I had finally loosened myself from the grip of Al-Qaahira – in Arabic the name, quite fittingly, means ‘The Oppressor’, ‘The Crusher’, ‘The Vanquisheress’. I knew that I could not be there then, but that I was inextricably bound to her: I could, I would, always come back.