Daughter to the Nile

by Noon Salah Eldin

I arrive at the airport,

Immigration lines,

Long,

Divided,

Cold.


Anything to declare”?

Yes.

I have two tongues in my head,

Wrapped carefully,

Home cooked meal,

So, dogs won’t tell.


Suitcase, the closest home,

I have; My mother’s DNA,

Courage and comfort,

Home treasures, tenderly packed.


Hibiscus flower, baobab powder,

Sesame oil, broad beans.

Cofftea, my auntie’s biscuit.


Mangoes from Shendi,

The sweetest May pride.

Dates to last till Ramadan,

Mama said.


My father’s last words,

Earrings,

Keep Allah in your heart,

He will keep you in his.

أحفظي الله..الله يحفظك

I step outside,

A big pink sign says,

People make Glasgow.


I had a brother,

Only 20 years old,

Survived the boat and open sea,

And fell apart in a lockdown hotel.

I am here to collect the ashes.


My birth home doesn’t call me daughter anymore.

This land doesn’t call me daughter either.

I am only daughter to the Nile.