The Sons of Cush

William Lisle Bowles

 Still fearful of the flood,   
They on the marble range and cloudy heights   
Of that vast mountain barrier,—which uprises   
High o’er the Red Sea coast, and stretches on   
With the sea-line of Afric’s southern bounds          
To Sofala,—delved in the granite mass   
Their dark abode, spreading from rock to rock   
Their subterranean cities, whilst they heard,   
Secure, the rains of vexed Orion rush.   
Emboldened they descend, and now their fanes           
On Egypt’s champaign darken, whilst the noise   
Of caravans is heard, and pyramids   
In the pale distance gleam. Imperial Thebes   
Starts, like a giant, from the dust; as when   
Some dread enchanter waves his wand, and towers           
And palaces far in the sandy wilds   
Spring up: and still, her sphinxes, huge and high,   
Her marble wrecks colossal, seem to speak   
The work of some great arm invisible,   
Surpassing human strength; while toiling Time,           
That sways his desolating scythe so vast,   
And weary Havoc murmuring at his side,   
Smite them in vain.   
[Extract from The Spirit of Discovery]

A mountain range runs down the coast of North Africa through Egypt and Sudan.

Main Location:

Red Sea Mountains, Elba National Park, Qesm Shlatin, Red Sea Governorate, Egypt

The Red Sea Mountains in Egypt's Eastern Desert, near the Red Sea Coast