A poem by Osama Al Danasouri

by qisasukhra

A poem entitled قصيدة العتمة [The verse of darkness] by Osama Al Danasouri from his 2001 collection على هيئة واحد شبهي [In the Semblance of One Resembling Me] which is included in the invaluable الأعمال الكاملة: دواوين، رواية، نصوص (Merit, 2009) [The Complete Works: poetry collections, a novel, texts].

h

h

The verse of darkness

h

“O arm of mine, who is enwrapped

about her waist:

endure…”

h

Your head comes to my right shoulder, and goes

Your hair comes

goes

           and comes,

collects the freshly-fallen tear

my face’s pallor…

goes

h

And you:

             dizzy as drunkards

The earth is slippery

and the night’s blind eye stares

leaps Hup! onto the heart’s wall

and peers over

h

Were you to hear me

I would say, Don’t fear

Wake up

I need a friend.

The four points slipped my hand

and on the road now, nothing,

but four lost legs

and still: dark the colour of the windows in the houses,

deepest dark

h

Fling your arm up into space, and strike

Fold up your fist

                                 strike

Open your sail to the wind… be borne

Unlearn your tongue

the taste of blues

h

Open your sails at ease… extend

The night tonight

is plainly without end

h

Open your sails at ease

Take care:

That voice… from where?

h

Mighty voice, whence come thee?

h

Prithee,

prophet voice, reply

h

Coward voice,

just answer me…

h

The earth creeps forward on the tide

The earth borne onward by the waves

The earth creeps on its way to me

h

O stubborn tree,

don’t plunge your roots

into my eye;

don’t peck my heart,

still wet

and crumbling apart

from rain and love,

O birds.

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