Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish dies
News without opinion.
Celebrated poet (Mahmoud Darwish) passes at age 67 in Houston hospital following complications after open-heart surgery
Revered as the Palestinians' national poet, Darwish was born March 13th 1941 in the village of al-Birwa in the Galilee. Following the establishment of Israel in 1948 the family relocated to Lebanon. The destruction of his childhood home and the evacuation of his village were themes Darwish revisited often in his writings.
His poetry is considered to have given voice to the Palestinian experience of exile, occupation and infighting. "Exile," he said in a 2001 interview, "is more than a geographical concept."
A Palestinian cultural icon, Darwish was a vocal critic of both the Israeli occupation and the Palestinian leadership. Darwish's influence was keenly felt among Palestinians. Last year he recited a poem damning
the deadly infighting between rival Palestinian groups Hamas and Fatah, describing it as ''a public attempt at suicide in the streets.'' His work has been translated into more than 20 languages and won numerous international prizes.
''He felt the pulse of Palestinians in beautiful poetry. He was a mirror of the Palestinian society,'' said Ali Qleibo, a Palestinian anthropologist and lecturer in cultural studies at Al Quds University in Jerusalem
Here is one of Mahmoud Darwish's poems,
O rose beyond the reach of time and of the senses
O kiss enveloped in the scarves of all the winds
surprise me with one dream
that my madness will recoil from you
Recoiling from you
In order to approach you
I discovered time
in order to recoil form you
I discovered my senses
Between approach and recoil
there is a stone the size of a dream
It does not approach
It does not recoil
You are my country
A stone is not what I am
therefor I do not like to face the sky
not do I die level with the ground
but I am a stranger, always a stranger