“You must watch the night,” says the guide. It is all that there is left to see when we arrive. The day slips, dragging along the edge of the white rocks. We listen to Bedouin drums and make a cold camp under the many stars. See the dark masses of tall rocks, the bright eyes of a fox, imagine what layers and layers of sand could look like.
It is not until morning that we really see the desert: a lady in a light summer nightdress. The wind is fresh and clear, blowing lighting through her cotton. The tall rocks, sculptures of dancers, shaped by the wind.
Something unfurled, as we sleep. Each one of us awkwardly admit to discovering something. We try to remember, exactly the words of it, but whatever it was, escapes again, like a dream just gone. Holding on, does nothing to help. We grasp handfuls of sand, again and again, let it seep through our fingers.
The guide makes us scream, marking the sand with the wheels of the jeep, driving up steep dunes, driving down, we are all laughing. The desert picks up the lines we leave, reforming with us, around us. It lets our footprints lie for now. The next strong wind will carry them. The desert including us and excluding us in its way.