My Sweetheart on the New Year

Poema de Nizar Qabbani (Damasco, 1923 – Londres, 1998)


I love you
I do not want to link you with any memory of the past
nor with the memory of passing trains
you are the last train; night and day it travels
across the veins of my hands
You are the last train
and I am your last station.

I love you
I do not wish to link you with water… or wind
with the Muslim or Christian calendars
with the motion of ebb and flow
with the hours of solar and lunar eclipse
I do not care what the observatories say
nor the signs in the coffe cup
for your eyes alone are the prophecy
They alone are responsible
for the joy in the world.

Note: Translation by Lena Jayyusi and Christopher Middleton.