“Poem to Soukaïna”
To tell of my new Moroccan Love,
Ô, I court her everyday.
But just as a pearl in the mud is a pearl,
So is my Love just an Arab girl…
in that I offer her constant, loving woos,
but she’ll ask me in return that I give her flooze*.
That’s when I kiss her and shrug, and I say, “Someday.”
And she gives me her love free anyway.
Ô, my Love is a child of the souks.
In Casablanca born.
A gypsy thief, “Soukaïna” named.
We met in the souks of Marrakech,
It was here my heart she tamed.
Ô, she came at nineteen to Marrakech,
In search of wild fun.
And she lived in Marrakech seven years,
Before my heart she won.
*Flooze: (Arabic slang word for “money.”)