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The Dead

Oxford Student PEN

This week, ORbits presents five translations of contemporary poetry in Arabic and French from Oxford Student PEN [1]‘s recent translation workshop. Please see here [2] for further information on the workshop’s origins and aims.

 
My fathers who escaped the frame,
My friends who set traps between this and that,
Those who never existed
And died,
They accompanied what is possible in the time
Of blind deeds.
They then re-emerged in the cloud lines and in the dust
Letting their habits dance in the milky space.
Enemies free of grudge and blood
My dead brothers are.
Far away,
Far far away,
We do not expect to go or return.
In our dwelling we realise eternity is too narrow.
We, the dead ones,
We can only imagine
And smile.

Firas Sulaiman