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
She does not love you. Your metaphors thrill her, You are her poet But that’s all there is to it. — Mahmoud Darwish, from “She Does Not Love You,” Almond Blossoms and Beyond. Trans. by Mohammad Shaheen. (Interlink Pub Group 2009)
I embrace you, until I return to my void, as an eternal visitor. No life and no death in what I sense as 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