And On The Very Day Of
My Arrival She Calmly Reassured Me.
She told me in her supremely
magical way that all was well with her.
She taught me once more a
lesson I had not quite forgotten, but that I was glad to learn again -
the lesson that Egypt owes her most subtle, most inner beauty to
Kheper, although she owes her marvels to men; that when he created the
sun which shines upon her, he gave her the lustre of her life, and
that those who come to her must be sun-worshippers if they would truly
and intimately understand the treasure or romance that lies heaped
within her bosom.
Thoth, says the old legend, travelled in the Boat of the Sun. If you
would love Egypt rightly, you, too, must be a traveller in that bark.
You must not fear to steep yourself in the mystery of gold, in the
mystery of heat, in the mystery of silence that seems softly showered
out of the sun. The sacred white lotus must be your emblem, and Horus,
the hawk-headed, merged in Ra, your special deity. Scarcely had I set
foot once more in Egypt before Thoth lifted me into the Boat of the
sun and soothed my fears to sleep.
I arrived in Cairo. I saw new and vast hotels; I saw crowded streets;
brilliant shops; English officials driving importantly in victorias,
surely to pay dreadful calls of ceremony; women in gigantic hats, with
Niagaras of veil, waving white gloves as they talked of - I guess - the
latest Cairene scandal.
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