Iraqi Poetry - Modernity and Communication

Soheil Najm

    4-Adil Abdullah
    (Born in Baghdad 1955.
    Published book: The Museum of Nothingness, Baghdad.)

    Collective Unemployment
    Everybody here is out of work,
    the workers in the factories and the civil servants in offices
    all of them are out of work!
    Those who are going early to the farms
    and coming back tired at noon
    are also out of work.
    The students and the teachers who the government
    is keen to provide with plentiful gifts
    to remain jobless are also out of work.
    The army and the police,
    the children and the adults,
    the women in the houses,
    the old men in the mosques all of them are
    out of work!
    When strangers blanket darkness
    upon a country
    there will be no work for its citizens
    but to return sunrise to its extinguished sun.

    (Translated by: Soheil Najm)

    5-Adil Mardan
    (Born in Basra, 1956.
    Published books: Oriental Spaces, Madrid 1999, One Who the Calmness Couldn’t Attend Him, Basra, 2005 )

    A Treatment by Music
    My eye, I leave it to the walker.
    Go my eye
    and search the plains.
    I give my ear to the stranger.
    Go my ear and pick up the corner’s whispers.
    My mouth, I give to the whistle.
    Be proud my mouth as much as you wish.
    My head, I throw to the myths.
    Be not so Sophist, O my head.
    I make my body sleep on the dust.
    Flourish, O my body, in the loftiness.
    My feet relax on sponge,
    my red shoes fly to the museum.

    (Translated by: Soheil Najm)

    The Big Brother
    To let masks remain sacrifices and to please
    the father who cleans his old whip
    and asks for full rights,
    he gets the Shari’a taboo out of the store
    and hangs the family on the blessing wall.
    Do you regret much when you took
    your baptized ones back to the bath?
    O, big brother,
    you who bear our fetters behind you,
    we revolve around you in the cells of the home,
    hallow to the whip
    which avenged itself
    and staggered in sacred pleasure.

    (Translated by: Soheil Najm)

    Note: Some of these poems appeared in: "Ishtar Songs", Edited by Soheil Najm and translated by him with Sadek R. Mohammed, Plain View Press P.O. 42255, Austin, TX 78704.

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