Poetry. This selection of poems and prose by Ahmed Rassim introduces English readers to the leading French-language Egyptian poet of the first half of the twentieth century. Admired by his fellow Alexandrian, Constantine Cavafy, Rassim's gently melancholic poems blend the antics of French surrealist writing with a highly personalized--one might call it "mock-arabesque"--oriental style. His whimsical prose chronicles his life as a civil servant in Cairo and Alexandria. Introduction by Gabriel Levin.