Khalid al-Hilli, From “Your Face and the Night”

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Your face appears whilst

I am in a dreamless slumber.

When I am away from your eyes

and from my body,

I see in my memory

papers falling into water,

walking among people.

I see the days fall or rise like numbers.

When the night is lonely, I shall leave alone.

Have you ever seen the night as a friend?

Have you ever witnessed the night and its sorrows?

Have you ever seen the night

sets a gallows for the heart and cry?

Have you ever seen seas

I love in the morning,

but drown me when the night comes?

When I am away from your eyes and my body,

what drown in my memory are:

days that never pass,
history that was never made,

generations that were never born. 



*Khalid al-Hilli is an Arab poet and journalist who lives in Melbourne, Australia. This poem is from the collection “Yor name is my memory”, Papyrus Publishing. (p. 70). English translation: Raghid Nahhas.

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