Chawki Bazih – Homes

Bazih LE Arabic Poetry September 2023

Download PDF Here
Live Encounters Arab Poets in Translation August 2023

Homes, poems by Chawki Bazih.


Homes are birds that gnaw at their chicks
The farther away they are from the iron of its slanted windows
And homes are bridges of nostalgia that connect the cradle to the grave
Mother adventure feather
Breeding mud
The secret of symmetry between nature and temper
Between the funeral and the midwife
And the homes are lines whose sea composes us like a poem
Line by line
To weigh the memories with their balance
Whenever the melody is broken
Or the compass got lost
And homes are roots
That always return with its inhabitants
To the same place they left
For its sun to shield them from the vertigo of the heights
And from the roads that displace them in the fractures of the place
And homes are a time that divides its beats equally among its inhabitants
To swim between two homes:
The home of existence and the home of non-existence
And to pass by stealthily
Between what falls apart and what heals
And the homes are the womb of our longing to reside in the drowsy archipelago
To touch the sea without water
To kindle our initial fires
Or cry over a time that will not return to earth again
And the homes are our lost paradises
So tend to the homes
Carry them like the turtle on your back
Wherever and whenever you are
In its shade, you will not stray from the path to righteousness for yourselves.
You will not tire of its black stones
No matter how far from your steps to its spiral paths
You will not bow over a cradle less harmful than its neglected vaults
And you will not find in the frost of your winters
What is equivalent to resting on the rock of the family
And the silk of silence
So tend to the homes, turn around them
At least once
Then hurry
Towards the home of life that does not die


It is the most dependent tree on what has passed
The crutch of childhood
And the initial bleating of the goats of the past
And its dive does not need proof
To see it, we need handkerchiefs waving from afar
For white drivers
Dreams to dispel fears
Around its pet stove
And tools to climb the years when we grow old as proverbs
Under its feeble sobs
And we need shovels with solid hands
Let us look, where the plant assumes the tombs of the ancestors
For trees, we exchange trunks with
And about the air of complete oblivion
The oaks are our wild back
No trees are populated in the villages except with his permission.
No bell hums in the foothills
Without its brotherhood
And tests virility itself
With its thirst beauty
The oaks are our instinctive departure
In eternal doubtful ways
When the sun’s disk appears green
At noon
It gets high
And when the memory passes over it its long strands
A poetic, retrograde moan tyrannizes it
Its voice intoxicates the valleys
But in its angry blood
The luster of mares that fizzes in the air
And the wind in the wild cannot
Twist its resolve
It does not die except standing
And it remains precipitous despite falling
Like the flames in the flint
Oaks have two natures:
A winter ferocity to pounce
On the blood of meaning
And a constant yearning to fly around the summer of form
And it shines between them
A narrow corridor steps
Between the beast and Man

Her voice is a lightning snap over Nissan

To Fayrouz

Not a sound
But a sunny day between two winters
And half lakes
And waterfall of rings
It is what makes us cry over what has not yet been established
And what makes a piece of music
Wreaths of flowers
And candles and funerals
As it flows, the windows of Palestine appear on the horizon
And bare trees
And two strands of oblivion
That rack what is left of Andalusian silk
To sing, we must awaken the dead from sleep
And to accompany the dawn with hymns and new feasts
To sing, blue must rule the earth
And to derive from the kingdom of pain twenty Christs
And resurrections
… And children sleeping on the balcony of faraway Sundays
It is as if the East, when she chants, is an eternal cradle of waves
Carried on a drop of water
Her voice is trees looking at her
From a runaway train like age
And the earth dreamed of by a blind planet
Singing without a river on the path of heaven
Her voice is the grass that tramples souls
And the water that seeps from the grief of the statues
And what remains of the tears of the Nile
In the eyelid of the mokattam
Her voice is a lightning that strikes over Nissan
The remains of a mare neighing at a passing massacre
And a looming cloud of red flowers
As Zainab’s lamentations above Muharram
Her voice is the geometry of color
Lines bending in the Dome of the Rock to touch the soul
And another baptism for Jordan’s childhood
Which drips from Mary’s eyelashes
Her voice is a people of the dead
And the palm of a woman standing in Qurna as Sawda
To lament a country that fell in a line of blood
Her voice is a pomegranate blow to Sidon
And a purple sword on Tyre
And a sun wipes over a camp
Her voice is the spectrum of a prophet whose revelation went crazy in his Burda
And his soul overflowed with palm trees and gardens
When she chanted, peace befallen upon the world

© Chawki Bazih

Chawki Bazih (1951) is a contemporary Lebanese poet. He has dozens of books on poetry and prose, as well as critical, literary, cultural and intellectual articles. He won the Okaz Poet Award in 2010 and the Al Owais Cultural Award in 2015. He also received the Jumblatt Medal in 2010, the Palestine Medal in 2017 and the Special Honor Award at the Mahmoud Darwish Award for Culture and Creativity on March, 2020.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.