Soundscape

About ten years ago I paid a small bribe to the caretaker of mosque in the city of the dead, a residential recuperation of a vast above-ground cemetery eaten by Cairo's expansion, to climb the minaret. it was damaged by the recent big earthquake and officially closed. Timing was perfect and while I looked across the endless metropole, it's brown haze of dust and pollution, it's rubble-strewn roofs, and leaning minarets, the evening azan (call to prayer) erupted from a thousand distinct points. Each mosque, little or big, with a live muizzen singing through some tangle of wires strung up to one or more loudspeakers. It was a cascade of sound that could turn a lump of coal into a believer. My hair stood on end. It was simply the absolutely most beautiful thing I'd ever heard, and probably still holds that status. I just found out that in 2004 the government attempted� � � There are some experiences that defy description by words.�