I fear to go back to any night I have knownI fear the eyes that can break through my banksSo that my heart is exposed to allI am afraid to confessThat I am afraid to go back to any heart I have drunkAnd so throw myself into the well… in myself. I am the unlucky… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
As for me, I will enter the mulberry treeswhere the silk worm makes me into a silk thread,then I’ll enter a woman’s needle inone of the myths,then I’ll fly like a shawl with the wind … — Mahmoud Darwish, from “Not as a Foreign Tourist Does,” translated by Fady Joudah, Michigan Quarterly Review (Summer 2005)
We are captives of what we love, what we desire, and what we are. — Mahmoud Darwish, “The Hoopoe,” Unfortunately, It Was Paradise: Selected Poems. (University of California Press, 2003)
How much I love you! How much you are you! and intimidated byhis own soul:There is no I now, but she is now in me. No she, but I am in herfragility. How I fearFor my dream, lest it see a dream that is not she atThe end of this song… — Mahmoud Darwish, from… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
I would yearn for nothingno yesterday passing, no tomorrow to comeand my present neither advancing nor retreatingNothing happening to me!If only I were a stone – I said – Oh if only I weresome stone so that water would burnish megreen, yellow – I would be placed in a roomlike a sculpture, or exercises in… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
If I were another I would have belonged to the road,neither you nor I would return. Awaken the guitarand we might sense the unknown and the route that temptsthe traveler to test gravity. I am onlymy steps, and you are both my compass and my chasm.If I were another on the road, I would havehidden… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
If you’re not a rain my lovebe a treesoaked with fertility … be a treeand if you’re not a tree my lovebe a stonesoaked with humidity … be a stoneand if you’re not a stone my lovebe a moonin the lover’s sleep … be a moon(that’s what a woman saidto her son at his funeral)… Continue reading Mahmoud Darwish
I will choose from my intimate memories what’s fitting:the scent of wrinkled sheets after making loveis 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.
She does not love you.Your metaphors thrill her,You are her poetBut that’s all there is to it. — Mahmoud Darwish, from “She Does Not Love You,” Almond Blossoms and Beyond (Ka-zahr al-lawz aw ab’ad), trans. by Mohammad Shaheen. Interlink Pub Group, 2009.
I embrace you, until I return to my void,as an eternal visitor. No life and nodeath in what I senseas a bird passing beyond nature.when I embrace you… — Mahmoud Darwish, from “Maybe, Because Winter Is Late,” The Butterfly’s Burden. Copper Canyon Press, 2006