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Closed Arabic Poem by: Hammoodi Al-Kinani* Translated From Arabic By: Inaam Al-Hashimi (Gold_n_silk) ======================= Closed, so said the first door Dead End, so said the second door Don't Worry, Sayeth all the doors! Destitution! Destitution! Destitution! So shouts the beggar in my face. Drought! Drought! Drought! So speaks the river to me. Me ....? I am still dancing in ecstasy, Searching for leftover from a loaf My mother baked in the first year of the last century; I carry my portfolio of official documents Containing, A fake birth certificate, Certificate of citizenship bearing odd digits, Green housing card Disclosing that I am still a Bedouin Searching for a lost camel! Our ration card Does not contain, yet, Materials quota; It bears my name, my third, grandfather's name, And the doubtful surname; What else is there in my papers portfolio? My permanent address And house number One, slash, One District Number One Not inhabited with people like me Street, haunted by mud And side-walks walking barefoot Over pedestrians walkways. Still wearing my father's shabby cloths, I touched my belly to learn How to broil hunger patties on it; A policeman saw me, He waved his whip to my face, "Exposing your private parts and defects is prohibited! Your belly is a defect, Your unusual appearance is A defect, All these papers in your portfolio are defects; We are charged with watching Those who expose their defects in public." Standing in line to receive Laundry detergent is a defect, Even scratching one's back Falls within the Forbidden section; When I felt frightened, I went to visit my father's grave; My mother was lying in his flank. I prayed for my mother And asked God his forgiveness For my father For repeatedly rubbing his belly Because of bug bites. ------ Translated by; EM. prof. inaam Al-Hasjimi USA September 23, 2009 -------------------- * Hammoodi Al-Kinani is an Iraqi writer

Copyright © | Year Posted 2013




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