An Attempt at Eulogy

Adeeb Kamal Ad-Deen






At forty years old

In the fortieth year

I sat at the door of a dream.

The dream was as lean as a lost date

As good as a Bedouin fire.

The playing cards were showing its picture

With or without a crown

In a formal uniform or with  iqal* on head.

I became aware of its silence.

I wept for its pearly tenderness.



At the fortieth shout

I said:

Dream, whose picture is shown by the playing cards

On the right and the left

On the left and the right,

How much we have missed your kindness.

How much we have missed your riding

The horses and the evenings

Asking after us we the undated letters

And the futureless dots

And the meaningless future

And the meaning that leads us ferociously

To the death arena.


On the fortieth night

My shout fell down.

So I collected its fragmented glass with  my wounded tongue.

The shout was drawn by freedom.

The shout was childish like water.

I said:

You, whose thin picture is shown by time cards

Up and down

Down and up,

How do I deplore your royal forehead?

I who made the tragedy by my blood

And by the flight from the fake lion that ate my liver.



In the fortieth treasure

The suns shrank and everything vanished.

The river Tigris was not drawn with ink

Nor with blood

Nor with anything

As if Tigris had never existed.

I wondered at my cowardliness

And at  the confusion of my tales.

But your treasure – treasure of history – is more wonderful

And your tale – tale of the depressed – is more complete.


At the fortieth stab

I sat near your tree: the fig tree and said:

Tree of the one whose picture is shown by trees

Time and again,

I am now near you in the capitals of hunger.

I pray God to make you fruitful

So that I may be satiated

And to supply you with water

So that I may satisfy my thirst

And to invoke you to write

So that I may write my song for the dream

Whose picture is shown by dust

As good as a lost date

As lean as a Bedouin fire.



At the fortieth door

The dream had no interest in my shouts and death rattles

Nor in my nudity and loss.

The dream was over there…

Without his queens

Without his butlers and retinue

Without his guards, throne and gold

Without any of those who carry out his orders.

The dream was over there …

Lying dead

Like a letter falling out of a dumb mouth

Like a love date torn by knives

Like a good fire which dogs made water on. 



· Iqal: a double-folded felt rope usually worn on the head by Arabs.



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