In Egypt — K.Hunt

Master explorers were we then, Master Douglas and I
Finding grandeur in the smallest things made the ditch out front, the Nile
No Egyptian soldiers were our match when we surveyed our claim
In acacia ships of alder leaves from Elephantine to Szaïsz

Empire building is the work is the work of no grander men than we
Who’ve culled the strongest of our slaves from a neighbour’s tree
Demanded that they bring cocoons as mummified remains
Which we entombed in pyramids built among the plains

To feed us all for hard we toiled we created gods to bless us
Turned to tadpoles, crocodiles, so we could get our nets up
So full they were of mosquito larvy well named the Nile’s fishes
That what was not eaten or traded or stole was dried on our mud dam at Memphis

Well we were for the thousands of years that make up a child’s summer’s day
Our ruling just, our honour sure in our Egypt built to stay
The starlings stayed on as ibises, curious muskrats as lions
An embittered couple – the man at her heel – Paris and Helen on parting

A dog that we took for a hippo brought us the corpse of a seagull-like phoenix
Which I lit with my father’s Zippo on a pyre of balled-up Kleenex

All was well for those thousands of years, with our efforts the sun was pleased
‘Til Alex, the neighbourhood bully, crushed our forces at Thebes

Sir Doug cried out “Attack” and I cried out “Retreat”
But our forces divided fell to the sand, confused, bloody, tired and beat
Lo, the sun did set on our kingdom as our mothers called out our names
Hark, these were not mothers calling us in, but heralds spreading our fame

Stood there we of dampened brow, a Progeny “all muddy”
We were in those robes interred, swarthy-dyed, true, but unsullied
Some would say that a life’s astray when great plans lead to folly
To this we would toast, Master Douglas and I, the gold won and lost in the valley

And if you should ever go abroad to check upon my story, do
Ask of out sphinx, a lazy tabby – who will not lie – to tell you true
If doubt remains of our grand domains, they’re easy still to see there
We made it all except Dougy’s dog built the pyramids at Giza