Sunday, November 21, 2004

Descending from Karmil by Palestinian poet Mahmud Darwish (my translation):
(Part II)
I imagined that you are my leaner
I grew tired of the relationship
between the nail and the wood
And when I disembarked from
top of the spear and wound
I held something
And it was the shoe
of the guard
Completing me
going down, going down..
From that early morning
I am searching for
a foothold
Following a river,
but not following waves.
Can I reclaim
my exhalations!.
A soldier is sharing my wound
Guarding it to earn a medal
Preventing me from continuing
in death,
taking half of my wound
And leaving a half for
the security of nations.
Shaking the fingers
of my palm
and it falls a memory,
old bullets,
a pine tree,
rotten fruits,
an accusation,
He searches my palm again,
confiscating Haifa which
smuggled a spike
Oh, ye Karmil,
Now the bells of all churches
declaring that my temporary
death does not always end,
and ends once.
Oh, Karmil, now paper
birds flock to you
You were no difference
between pebbles and birds,
And the resurrection of Christ
has been postponed again
Oh, Karmil, now the school
holidays begin
and Fayruz will sing for me
And now we take a tube
of tear gas pills,
and we cry over a flying mountain
Oh, Karmil, now another
officer makes me a subject
of immortality!
We have gone far from the trees,
The sea separates us
And here we are between
purity and sin, two things
linking and separating
as if lovers are a circle
of chalk that are capable
of dissolution or life...
I love the countries that I love
I love the women that I love
but a bush of cypress in
flaming Karmil is equal
to the waists of women
and all the capitals
I love the seas that I love
I love the fields that I love
but a drop of water on the
feather of a skylark
on the stones of Haifa
equals all the seas
and washes off the sins
that I will commit
Allow me into the lost
I will yell out the cry
of Nadhim Hikmat:
Oh, my homeland!...