Poems

Shakir, How Strange

I am you avowal, your disavowal, your confession, your
             denial
I inspire your love, I incur your hatred
I have the right to your blessing, I am the core of your wrath
Shakir, how strange: I am known and unknown to you

Translation notes

This delicate poem was far from easy to translate. As a series of abstract paradoxes, we needed to choose exactly the right terms, both for the meanings of the words and for their music.

This is one in a long series of poems grouped by their forms, none of which has a title. Calling the poem 'quatrain' - the translation of 'dohra' - seemed a bit bald, so we added a title to the poem.

Very little contemporary poetry from Siraiki has been translated into English and we were very lucky that Nukhbah Langah brought these beautiful poems by Shakir Shujaabadi to our workshop.

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