The Flute Cried
The flue cried. If only I could go to Damascus as an echo.
Silk weeps on the shores and pass through a sobbing cry.
Landscapes filled with tears. The flute cried and tore the sky into two women.
It divided the road and broke the heart of the sand grouse.
It divided us so we'd fall in love. O flute, we plea for mercy!
We are not distant as the sunset. Are you crying out so cry in vain,
or to crush the mountain as well as Adam and Eve's apple? O shout of
infinitive silence, cry: Damascus, my woman, I will love and I will survive
The flute cried. If only I could go to Damascus as an echo.
I even believe in what I don't believe. Silky tears burn away our breath.
The flute cried. If only I could cry like the flute, then I would know Damascus.
From Fewer Roses (1986) by Mahmoud Darwish
Translated by Munir Akash and Carolyn Forché