Monday, September 1, 2014

Sonnet V by Mahmoud Darwish


Sonnet V

I touch you as a lonely violin touches the suburbs of the faraway place 
patiently the river asks for its share of the drizzle 
and, bit by bit, a tomorrow passing in poems approaches 
so I carry faraway’s land and it carries me on travel’s road  

On a mare made of your virtues, my soul weaves 
a natural sky made of your shadows, one chrysalis at a time. 
I am the son of what you do in the earth, son of my wounds 
that have lit up the pomegranate blossoms in your closed-up gardens  

Out of jasmine the night’s blood streams white. Your perfume, 
my weakness and your secret, follows me like a snakebite. And your hair 
is a tent of wind autumn in color. I walk along with speech 
to the last of the words a bedouin told a pair of doves  

I palpate you as a violin palpates the silk of the faraway time 
and around me and you sprouts the grass of an ancient place—anew

(Translated by Fady Joudah)


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