And when you return to me.. despite distances..
I feel that radiance lighting my face again,
And I hear the sound of sticks in the wheels of my life cracking - under the radiance,
Under the stars that twinkle in my eyes -
Like thin twigs
I kiss your eyelids ... while seas and mountains hold us apart
And from the sea I seek inspiration
I read in its every shape a philosophy.
I learn to probe the secrets of serenity
And to realise the turbulence of wrath
And on the dancing waves I witness a new charm
of the full moon
As it breaks into glittering fragments.
Thence I understand restlessness...

And how sleeplessness enhances the beauty of
your drooping lids.
I kiss your eyelids...
But the seas and mountains remain
And every mountain touched by my gaze inspires
me with the meaning of loftiness,
And the philosophy of patience and endurance.
And when the arms encircle you
After the yearning...
When time yields, but place does not...
And I hug my longing to my chest
And wonder how within my arms the two incompatibles unite
The heights of violence ... and extreme tenderness -
And thence I do not feel the length of distance ...
...The seas ...
...The waves ...
...The night ...
...Or the mountain heights ...
I only feel the radiance invading my soul
And the exuberance of beauty.

New Year’s Eve

The longer pointer embraces the other
At the top of the disc of time.
And at the moment of fusion,
One year falls dead,
One year is born.
No pangs of a mother
Just the familiar chime
Then a wave of ecstatic emotion
As humans embrace each other
And glasses kiss and cluster.
Yet well beyond the din and sway -
As always when folly crosses my way -
My thoughts go galloping far away
And the enchanting Muse - like Sleeping Beauty -
Wakes up to whisper into my ear:
"Is this a moment for ecstasy?

"Or really a moment for mourning?"
Then quickly adds in a fainter whisper:
"Or is it just like any other?"
And after some reflection I say:
"None of these is right
"It's a moment to think and ponder
"Or else a moment to pray"
And whilst a year is born around me
A poem struggles to see the light
Before the break of day.

Illuminations in a Valley without Vegetation

We have come to You
Repeating: "Here we are, at Your service .. here we are .. here we are"
With longing carrying us on wings:
A longing to You
And a longing for Your forgiveness.
We have come to You from all corners of the earth
We have come with an eye on the joys of life
But with both eyes on the bounties of the second life
O Lord! Bestow forgiveness upon us ..

* * * * * *
We have come to You from near and far,
Answering Your call,
Chanting the praise of Your glory
Until our chanting fills the sky.
Walking on land kissed by the feet of prophets.
We have come to You dishevelled in this simple attire,
With no adornments and no sewn dresses.
We have come devoid of pride.
We have come with our longing and hopes,
With our overflowing prayers.
We have come with all these crowds, all these millions,
With streams of tears,
Calling You between reverence and praise.
And You are the all-seeing and all-hearing.
We have come with eager steps from all directions
To Mount Arafat
Floating on wings of words of praise for you.
We have come with our love and longing
To cast off the burden of our years into your valley
So Lord accept our repentance and do forgive.

* * * * * * *
When I stepped into your glorious Grand Mosque
And saw the splendour of your Holy Kaba
I felt a surge of longing in my chest swelling
And felt delight .. delight ..
I was drowned in happiness.
I tried to reach the Black Stone
But human waves of Your loving disciples swept me,
And forced me to give up.
So I flew to it with my soul and kissed it like the morning light
And my heart flew to the Moltazem
And when my heart clung to the cover of your Holy Kaba
I felt I was granted a dream ..
That Your eyes were guarding over me.
When I drank Zamzam water to my heart's fill
I felt I was completely cleansed
And that my heart which had been parched by sins
Was flowering within my ribs like a rose crowned by morning dew
Diffusing the fragrance of roses.
I was swept by the great moment
The tears running down my cheeks.


Because I have realised that poetry achieves nothing
And that I have slaughtered my heart with poetry
And every time a new poem is born, I die a little
I have sworn to write no more

* * * * *

Because I have realised that poetry is devastating, like your love
For both lift me at times to the zenith
And at others toss me into beds of thorns
I have sworn to set myself free,
To tear up my dreams,
To crush my pens,
To banish love
And to lay a bed in my eyelids for sleep ...
I have decided all this

Yet, I am still entrapped.
I continue to weave the words
And my heart still hovers around your bewitching beauty
And yet I continue to dream
Of plucking roses without thorns
Oh for my poems and for your love!

By the Lake

Each time my car passes the lake
Where the ducks swim in the water amidst the verdure,
And I see children playing on swings amongst the flowers
Or running happily on the grass,
Feelings of longing engulf me
The film of memories plays back before my eyes
all over again ....
Your eager face, brimming with joy, comes to me from all directions,
And I see your tiny fist full of pieces of bread
As it flinges them into the water
And as the ducks race to catch them
Your sweet voice calls with childlike excitement
"Papa .... kuko.... Papa .... kuko...."

And the echo of your lisp sings happily
In unintelligible words, like the dialogue of birds..
Suddenly you are running at full speed towards the water
Towards the ducks ....
I run ....
And clutch your precious little body
And when it is firmly in my arms
I hug it fiercely
And shower it with burning kisses
Whilst you protest with pleas about the "kuko"
And finger pointing to the ducks

* * * *

O Wajd, if only you knew the longing
You would have realised that separation from loved ones
Was fire .... nay madness.

The Waves

It is the wave coming ..
It is the wave receding ..
So are the vagaries of life, my love.
If life at times is harsh on us
Do not be sad, my love.
Smile to me tenderly.
Oh, how sweet is your smile!

* * * * *

It is the wave playing
It is the wave having fun ..
It will come and go
And come and go again
So if today is harsh
Perhaps tomorrow will be kinder.
And if a beguiling glance is cast your way today

Be not deceived, my love,
For tomorrow it may become a fickle frown.
But do not grieve my love, my music, my fragrance.
Hand me the cup of love,
Filled with sweet nectar.
Soothe my parched soul —
Never let my cup run dry!
It is the world - sweet and bitter,
So why should we despair,
My love, sister of the moon,
But yet more beautiful.
Fill the cup of love to the brim and let us drink
So that we may drown our lingering sorrow in its bowl
If we do not rejoice now, when will we ever do?

* * * *

It is the wave playing ..
It is the wave billowing
Surging angrily, harshly,
As though to welcome violence.
But so long as your image sleeps in my eyelids,
So long as my heart throbs with yearning,
So long as your heart flutters with love,
Then will our love never drown
But forever ride the surf.
And if the waves could come between us ..
They would dry up!
In our hearts will always be
The song of Love
Despite everything