Poetry – Evening in the Square

Evening in the Square

Dressed in their finery,

The locals wander

With the tourists

Among the snake baiters,

Strange geezers,

Monkey jailers,

Story tellers,

Fortune seers,

Fire breathers,

Lizard teasers,

Water pourers,

Belly dancers,

Acrobats,

Orange squeezers,

Poseurs,

Music makers,

Pot sellers,

Olive vendors,

Store minders,

Garment merchandisers,

Horse riders,

Ostrich pleasers,

Coffee splashes,

Haberdashers,

Sweetmeat hawkers.

Amid the clamour,

The din,

Stinking dustbins,

Watch peddlers,

Fly infested nougat meddlers,

Cake dispensers,

Tourist tat,

And gaudy crap.

All vying for attention,

All fighting for a dollar,

All struggling in the squalor

Of the market square.

Opher 20.3.2019

In the evening the square came to life as the locals, all dressed up in their finery drifted around mingling with the tourists.

I wondered what the locals really made of it all?

Did they find it amusing that all these people came from afar to boggle at the spectacle? Or did they resent the way we found their customs and attire quaint? Did they find it insulting?

It seemed that everything was aimed at the foreigners. They weren’t averse to fleecing those foreigners.

But then animals were deployed, monkeys on chains, snakes prodded to perform and camels hit with sticks. I did not like to see animals being abused this way. Who was perpetuating this? I guess we were.

But the square was obviously the focus of social interaction. The locals came out to meet up. After prayers and meals they dressed up and met up. It was a place of great social activity.

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