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Despair breeds hope
2 min read

Poems by Nidal Al-Faqaawi

Two poems are selected for this issue number from the poetry collection Noon Poems in the Cobbler's Cart by Nidal Al-Faqaawi, winner of the first prize in the Young Writer of the Year 2015 competition launched by the A.M. Qattan Foundation.

Nidal Al-Faqaawi was born in 1985, in Khan Yunis, Gaza Strip. He holds a master's degree in psychology from Al-Azhar University in Gaza, and a bachelor's degree in psychology from Al-Aqsa University in Gaza. Al-Faqaawi works in the field of counseling and psychological support for children and youth. He has been writing poetry for many years, and his works have been published in local and Arab cultural and literary magazines

Credits Poems: Nidal Al-Faqaawi Translation: Wael Sawah May 23 2023


How will all this end?
Inside me primitive groups warding off danger from me,
with spears and pointed stones.
Inside me strains from the beginning of formation,
Indians, Caucasians, Aryans, and Mongols.
Inside me civilizations built of red clay,
inhabited by white negroes.
Inside me wandering tribes that I can sense coming,
from the clanging of swords and the smell of fire
Inside me great armies,
legions of soldiers with amputated feet,
Inside me victorious giggles,
and wine mixed with the screams of captives.
Inside me widows, homeless people,
burning shacks, and corpses.
How will all this end?
I am alone on earth,
defeat is eating me up,
I smell like a dead emperor.




I sing

To the first tree,
to the leaves resting on the blades of grass,
to the reapers grieving over the necks of crops,
to the wind,
to the dirt road from the barley field to the cement forests,
to the lost travelers on a chariot pulled by the soul,
to the fading moons,
to the guilty, who are thirsty for blood and the truth,
to the strangers who have been lulled by eternity,
so they rested,
and I sing,
to the beastly darkness,
to the deceiver, to the wolf, to the lewd,
to the loggers who desecrated my mother's body,
and to the accomplice carpenters on its branches,
and my wings,
all for a new house,
the cage,
I sing.


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