- Saloni M presents The Shades of Love
Khalid al-Hilli was born in Hillah-Babylon,
in Iraq. He started publishing poems and articles in leading Arabic magazines,
such as Al-Adeeb and Al-Thaqafa in 1962. He worked for several
Iraqi newspapers and magazines before he eventually left Iraq in 1979.
as a correspondent for the Qatari Ar-Raya newspaper, whilst he
was in the United Arab Emirates between 1979 and 1982, and continued this
task when he lived in Morocco between 1982 and 1988. In Morocco, he also
worked as a cultural editor for Al-Mithaq al-Watani newspaper.
to Australia in 1989, working for a period as a correspondent to Al-Yaum,
a Saudi newspaper. Since then, he has continued to write for Arabic newspapers
in Australia and overseas. In the past few years he has lived between
London and Melbourne.
he published a book titled Two Colourless Eyes. It is a collection
of poems, thoughts and contemplations. In 1988, he published a poetry
collection titled Cloudy Cities, some of the poems from this collection
have been translated into English and published in Kalimat, an
international periodical of English and Arabic creative writing. He is
now a literary advisor for Kalimat.
by Raghid Nahhas
I stick on
the door the map of our planet as it revolves
are you revolving now…
do I revolve?
for you everywhere,
places are what I see.
for you on all the roads of this earth
all this planet’s maps
I see my face revolving in the mirror.
There are five
continents on this planet
are seas where the blueness of your eyes
to be seen.
are countless mountains
are women increasing in number now
are billions whose
agenda is unknown to me
all of that, but
not seen a bit of your face
maps of this planet.
Do I see your
face in the night’s dreams?
closer now, for I don’t know
will become of my heartaches tomorrow.
they would be if I were a prophet
of the five continents.
closer so I reveal my sorrows to you
I will come
to you like walking sand
phantasm running towards you
or dead… or paralysed…
with the wind…
ask about you in the streets
in the forests
in the taverns
Would you come
to me a silence…
in my eyes and dream?
Wars hide in
imaginary rain becomes trees of tears
could the desperate write his face?
the day witness its disturbed elements?
you spend your long hours
me being the night and day?
flying with the wind
an illusionary child...
al-Hilli 2005. Translation by Raghid Nahhas.
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