Sunday, October 14, 2012

Ziba Karbassi

When the blood-home is here, just here
When the blood-home has the smell of your body
Don’t pull me away from myself
                                    don’t take me anywhere away from myself
When the smell of my love’s body spreads through the air of the room
                                                and the room becomes drunk
And me and the memories and the shadows walk drunkenly
                                                            with each other
                                                                        and die a little
                                                                                    in each other

Dance crazily, dance, blood-home dance,
                                                blood   home   dance

Migrant memories will come back again
Piece by piece memory of the craziness of being apart comes back again
And the cold and the homelessness come to this room
                                                under this roof
                                                            to take me away again.

Memories of my grandfather, uncles and aunts
Me and my father doing the round loop of Shogholle
                                                                           and Golistan *

The tears of my always grieving mother in the afternoons of summer
That soft thyroid full of constricted sobbing & fingered by winter bones
Hey, Hey, Hey : all these
                                    vagrant memories!

Don’t take me from myself
                        don’t take me anywhere at all out of myself

When the smell of jasmine and pomegranate and grandmother, of vanilla and
quince and auntie and saffron, and tangerines and uncle and thin flakes of
nougat, thin flakes, come : it is the hug of my poem, baklava garden,
                                                Tabriz-heart, Shams-breath,

When grandmother is dead, and auntie too, and uncle
                                                is dead,
and pieces of you are also dead inside me,
why do your chest and my breath still
        smell with life ?

Don’t let them take away my breathing
                                    don’t let them cut down my breath-line

And the hair on your chest which is soft
                                    and my head that always falls there

My always peaceful homeland, my always may-time meadow
Let me stay here
                        just here

Blood-land embrace, poetry-embrace, mother-embrace,
poetry-heart, dear love :
            don’t let me be pulled away from myself
                        don’t let me be pulled loose
          from here at all.

* Shogholle & Golistan, in this instance, are the names of
      parks in the poet’s northwestern birth-city of Tabriz.

[The above poem is below in Farsi. To hear, click on the English title above.]

زیبا کرباسی

-رقص «اَتن»*


وطن که همینجا باشد وطن

وقتی بوی تن تو داشته باشد وطن

مرا از خود نبرید

از خود به هیچ کجا نبرید

وقتی بوی تن معشوق بپیچد و مست کند اتاق

من و یادها و سایه ها تلوتلو چرخی بزنیم درهم و باهم

بمیریم کمی از هم

رقص بی قرار وطن کنیم وطن

و یادهای سرگردانی دوباره بیایند

یادهای تکه تکه از جنون جدایی دوباره بیایند

سرما و بی خانمانی بیاید در این اتاق زیر این سقف

تا مرا ببرد

یادهای پدربزرگ عمو دایی

من و بابا و چرخ و فلک بازی و «شاه گویلی» و «باغ گلستان»

گریه های مادر سوگوارم در عصرهای تابستان

هی اینهمه اینهمه اینهمه یادهای سرگردان

مرا از خود نبرید مرا از خود به هیچ کجا نه

وقتی بوی شب بو و انار دانه و مادربزرگ و به و ریواس و عمه و زعفران و نارنج و دایی و نقل نقل می دهد بغلت

شعر بغل جان

باغ باقلوا تبریز دل

شمس نفسم

وقتی مادربزرگ مرده باشد

عمه مرده باشد

دایی هم

و تکه هایی از تو نیز زنده مرده باشند در من

پس چرا بوی زندگی می دهد هنوز سینه ات


نگذار ببُرند نفسم را

نگذار ببَرند

مرا نگذار معشوق

مرا از خود نگذار

و سینه ات این دشت اردیبهشت

که سرم سوی آن خم می شود

چه خوب است همینجا بمانم

وطن آغوش شعرآغوش مادروطن شعروطن معشوق شعر

نگذار مرا ببرند

نگذار مرا از تو به هیچ کجا ببرند.

* رقص «اَتن» رقص ملی افغانستان است
spring 2000 london



To Hell with It

The end of no ending
And from the inmost ache of the brain of a young inventor a stone jerks free
And the earth breaks up
                        in tiny pieces
                                    tiny tiny pieces
                                                as a voice shattering in its semiotic stricture
                                                             must in the mouth of language –
                                                                           become a poem!

And the shoulders of earth tighten in trauma
And the tree-monkeys hopscotch from this to that side of the dream

The knees of the earth splinter
The shoulders are cracked apart
The ss-ss-sso of sob is snapped off from sobbing, and where are the shudders ?
The voice of hh-hhha’s hurled apart from laughter, and where are the shivers ?
And wingless flightless birds are flocked between the cracks and
the voices of weeping.

To hell with it !
Let the sky spit its stars on your face

To hell with it !
Let the sun turn its heat from you
                                                To hell with it !

And the mountains vomit intestines over you
                                                                   To hell with it !

To hell with it you bird hurled in the snow for hiding

                                                            To hell with it !

Leave this earth, this ripped-open woman, leave her,
            you-mother-fucker : you-oedipus-of-no-future

If I were a hug
If I were a hu-hug, 
                                    If I were a hug I would hold this wrapt
so tightly O

                                                Until all of it healed over …. If I
                                                                        were a hug …

Translated fr. Farsi by Stephen Watts and Ziba Karbassi


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