Saturday, April 16, 2011

Mahmoud Darwish "I leave the other side of my life where it wants to stay"

"I leave the other side of my life where it wants to stay, and follow/ the remainder of my life in search of the other side of it"
Mahmoud Darwish
Boulevard St Germain
My teenage son has been away for a couple of days, staying with friends. Freed from the demands of parenting I have spent today in solitude- engaged in reading, thinking and reflection.

My daily dose of poetry has been Mahmoud Darwish's A River Dies of Thirst, a book of observations, thoughts and feelings written as poems and diary extracts during the 2006 Israeli attack on Gaza and Lebanon (A review of the book is here). These were some of the last poems Darwish was to write before his death in August 2008.

I think
I think
and there is no crime in what I think
and no delusion
that I
with a thread of silk can cut through iron
that I
with a thread of wool
can build tents in remote places
and escape from them
and from me
and because.... as if I!

The Word
He liked a word
He opened the dictionary
He couldn't find it
or an imprecise meaning for it
but it haunted him at night
musical, harmonious
with a mysterious nature

He said 'It needs a poet
and some metaphor so that it turns green and red
on the surface of dark nights'

What is it?
He found the meaning
and the word was lost to him.

The Girl / The Scream

There is a girl on a sea shore
And the girl has a family
And the family has a house
And the house has two windows and a door.
And at sea there's a warship playing a game
of targeting those taking a stroll on the shore.
Four five seven drop to the sand.
The girl is spared by a sleeve of mist
a certain celestial sleeve came to rescue her.
She calls out: Dad, my Dad, let's go home, this sea is not for us.
And the father does not reply.
He lies there in an agony of absence, wrapped in his shadow in an agony of absence.
Blood in her palms blood in the clouds,
Her scream flies away with her far from the sea shore and higher.
She screams in the night of a wilderness
The echo has no echo
And the girl becomes the eternal scream of a breaking news event made obsolete by the planes return
to bomb a house with two windows and a door.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank You. Am grateful!