Monday, August 11, 2008

Voice of Palestine Died مات محمود درويش

Only some hours ago, Al-Jazeera reported the funeral of Mahmoud Darwish, best-known Palestinian poet abroad. He found his last rest on a cemetery in the new quarter of Ramallah where his funeral took place in the presence of a delegation from Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas.

One might ask why it's just the death of Mahmoud Darwish that is being mentioned in my newsblog as there are so many others dying those days, in Palestine or elsewhere in the Middle East.

The reason is that Darwish has been mentioned years before by BLUEPRINT magazine and in the frame of my view on Arabic literature, accessible from the BLUEPRINT main page. He has been presented as a witness and voice of the Palestinian people who are still suffering from al-Nakba النكبة, the catastrophe of loosing their homeland.
Furthermore, I remember having seen a booklet of his poetry in the German translation and which I found on a regional German bookfair.

Therefore, I think it's worth to remind my visitors of that small text I once presented on my website and that might be a hint at how Palestinian people are really feeling today:

Please note !
I am an Arab

My hair is like coal
My eyes are like coffee

Particular signs:
A keffyé on my head with its rope well tied
And my palm is hard like a stone
Crushing the other when shaking hands

My favourite dishes are
Olive oil and thyme

My address:
I come from an isolated village
Where the streets don't have names any longer
And everybody, in the quarry and in the fields as well,
Is fond of communism

Please note !
I am an Arab - And now you are furious !

UPDATE August 14, 2008:
Today, AL-JAZEERA TV (English broadcast) dedicated part of its program to Mahmoud Darwish. We learnt that Darwish was a member of the PLO Executive Committee for a certain time but no hardliner at all. Such, many voices from all over the world now mourn the loss of a peace-loving man and a great poet.

The following lines from Mahmoud Darwish I found on the webblog of some Saudi-Arabian translator who recently sent me a comment:

في أعماقِي موسيقى خفيةٌ
ِأخشَى عليهَا
..منَ العزفِ المنفرد

Deep inside me,
there lies a hidden symphony,
I fear for it from solo playing.

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