He remembers his prison cell with its air hole as if he loves it.
Tremble in the cage of freedom: o, there
Where the Lamptonite horizons include herds of fog,
As if there were freedom there, distant, remote, desirable.
Life is proud of it.
The rulership wouldn't lengthen it, and there is no hand upon it thin like a blade, sharp like lightning, towering like the looming of the gods,
His hand in the freedom of creation
grants his dreams through language and shows mercy in selecting his camel saddles.
BASSAM K FRANGIEH
is Professor of Arabic at Yale University, USA, and au thor of several books, including Alien atien and fhr Palestinian Novel (Arabic). He has translated leading Arab Poets and novelists into English.