Hanem, we must have met before, 
   Perhaps a thousand years ago; 
I still remember when I tore 
   Your virgin veil of lunar snow. 
By Allah, I remember, too, 
   When, sousing in my mortal bain, 
You bit my lip and said, “Adieu,
   When shall we, Syrian, meet again?”

Hanem, thine eyes are brighter far
    Than when in mine they shone one day; 
I wager every moon and star
    The tax of lustre to them pay. 
And those who dared with them to jest, 
   Where are they now?—those lovers slain
Who whispered dying on your breast, 
   “O Hanem, shall we meet again?”

The victims of your eyes are here, 
   In pyramids they keep their clay; 
And even your sister Flames are near, 
   They fain would kiss my soul away. 
Full many a time from them you bore
   This mortal love, this mortal gain; 
Remember Nubia’s sable shore—
   When shall we, Hanem, meet again? 

Why quickly through the Cairo street?—
   Will you return?—Shall I remain? 
Fate might not ever the chance repeat; 
   When shall we, Hanem, meet again? 

From A Chant of Mystics (James T. White & Co., 1921) by Ameen Rihani. This poem is in the public domain.