My love, whose name is just that, “my love,” my life’s flower is about to burn in my hand I beg you please let’s part — Ghassan Zaqtan, from “Beyond That,” The Silence That Remains: Selected Poems. Translated by Fady Joudah (Copper Canyon Press, 2017)
Nothing’s left to say between us everything went into the train that hid its whistle in the smoke that didn’t become a cloud in the departure that gathered your limbs Nothing’s left to say between us so let your death be the insight of dazzling silver and let the sun of those cities be a… Continue reading Ghassan Zaqtan
A poem in a difficult time is beautiful flowers in a cemetery. — Mahmoud Darwish, from “To A Young Poet,” Poetry (March 2010)
I will choose from my intimate memories what’s fitting: the scent of wrinkled sheets after making love is the scent of grass after rain. — Mahmoud Darwish, from “Dense Fog Over The Bridge,” If I Were Another: Poems. Translated by Fady Joudah. (Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1 edition, October 27, 2009) Originally published 2009.
If I were another I would have belonged to the road, neither you nor I would return. Awaken the guitar and we might sense the unknown and the route that tempts the traveler to test gravity. I am only my steps, and you are both my compass and my chasm. If I were another on… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
The road is long like an ancient poet’s night: plains and hills, rivers and valleys. Walk according to your dream’s measure: either a lily follows you or the gallows. — Mahmoud Darwish, from “To a Young Poet,” trans. Fady Joudah, Poetry (March 2010)
in a seagull’s fashion, and pitched my new tent on a heavenly slope. Right here I’ll write a new chapter in the eulogies to the sea: mythic is my language, and my heart a blue wave grazing a rock: “Don’t give me, O sea, what I don’t deserve of song. And don’t be, O sea,… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish