Longing is the absent chatting with the absent. The distant turning toward the distant. Longing is the spring’s thirst for the jar-carrying women, and vice versa. Longing allows distance to recede, as if looking forward, although it may be called hope, were an adventure and a poetic notion. The present tense is hesitant and perplexed,… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
This heart, my heart, is small and the love, my love, is large. It travels in the wind, descends, loosens a pomegranate then falls in the wandering of two almond eyes, then ascends in the dawn of two dimples and forgets the way back to house and name. This heart, my heart, is small and… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
In autumn I delight to see the commonness of colors, no throne holds the humble gold in the leaves of humble trees who are equal in the thirst for love. I delight in the truce between armies, awaiting the contest between two poets, who love the season of autumn, yet differ over the direction of… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
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.