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Remember Armenia!

Armenian Gardens of Cairo, Egypt and the Elders Who Grow Her

(This photograph was taken at the Armenian Catholic Church on 22 Youssef El-Gendy, Bab Al Louq-Abdeen, in Downtown Cairo. Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)




When Maidens of Armenia sing, the Spirit of elders’ memory is. . revived!

When the flowers of Armenia cry, the Spirits of the brokenhearted. . .return to life!


For the Armenian community of Egypt, church gardens are the arenas of storytelling and cultural preservation.  They are the centers, where elders of the community come to reflect on what was. . .what is, and what is left to come.  It is this, that enchants the aesthetics of memory.  The magic of time to bring past imagery to the present mind. 


(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)



Being among the elders, and especially elder, Armenian women, the responsibility of future Armenian seedlings was evident.  A continuation of memory for what was saved, and what was lost.  Coming of age tales, and the sacred lyric of hearing elders before them. . .whose eyes witnessed the slaughter.  Attending church services, that honored the words, “remember,” were a testament to a silent resistance.  Continued efforts to ensure “the lost ones,” were honored.

A conversation from one Armenian, elder woman, revealed her interaction with a son of Black America.  Such was a spiritual foreshadow for a future meeting, of one maiden from this unique, and peculiar, culture.  After all, the music of her people has traveled, like sweetened whispers-giving blessings and healing to wherever land she touches.

So, the elders of Armenia. . .

                        . . .continuing on their tour, in their teaching of Black America’s daughter, the sacred chambers and religious architecture of Armenia’s presence in Egypt.  The first stop was the Armenian Catholic Church.  Located on 22 Youssef El-Gendy (of Bab Al Louq, Abdeen), it serves as heaven’s gates, in the midst of a bustling environment.  One filled with the impatience of traffic, and cars always in a hurried rush.  It was here, where the author first experienced the 100th anniversary of the Armenian Genocide.  And it is where, she first met. . .the maidens.  For on that night, she was under their protection, and their care. A gift given to all foreigners, in attendance that night. It was only suitable that she return. 

                     And return. . .she did! This time, it was on another, special holiday. One, where the fruition of woman’s bloom was celebrated. 

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)


(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)


Walking through the gardens, and the church temple, calmness continued to soothe a prior dispute. One where her coloration was questioned, by a guard, who found it strange that a being of the dark feminine, should enter the space.  Yet, the elders recognized. . .her.  And she was welcomed. The breath of lighted candles was evident, by their use.  Ashes and wax were traces of mourning, blessings, and love.  It was important for her to soak into such memories. Feeling them.  Allowing her being to feel every sensory of memory.  So that she, too, would never forget. 

A precious lunch outing into Indian cuisine were human expressions for the meeting of culture.  And one’s travel to the other.  For in this case, food and artwork displayed, would implicate a future meet-up in Hindi’s Gardens.  With the elders, pictures were capture, and memories treasured.  Proof that this Spiritual journey had. . .exist!

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)


(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

Another time.  Another moment.  More Beings of Armenian accompanied the journey. Only this time, they gathered in one Armenian garden, of Heliopolis’ mapping.  Housed in one’s familiar landscaping; as only children of Armenia could do.  Laughing, entertaining, and an intrinsic desire to learn their Mother Tongue was part of the music!  Eating with heartiness, was also part of the ritual. 

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

These first two stops were only the beginning in Black America’s maiden to explore another Garden.  One not of her own soiling.  Yet, one that seemed to be very familiar.  Future dates with Armenian maidens were already written.  And the art of cultural oratory continued to weave herself into existence.  Simultaneously, the joys of Armenian elders, is that they are the libraries, knowledge-keepers, and wisdom makers of Armenia’s Gardens.  They are also the judges, who affirm that memory be kept alive! That future generations. . .Remember!  That when those who despise the very mention of truth come to celebrate falsehoods, MEMORY and THE WORD will deem them as liars.

Elders are a gift to the memory of time.  They are the walking, breathing personifications of it.  It is through this art, where civilizations are birthed and gardens are kept.  Knowledge is housed in their gardens.  And they continue to breath in. . .knowledge. 

Until next time, one Maiden awaits more stories of knowledge keepers.  And the paths they propel towards her.

(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)


(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)


(Photograph By Member of the Armenian community in Cairo; Edits By Lauren K. Clark)

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