A stone committed suicide

THE LITTLE ROCK
A Poem by: Ilia Abu Madhi

 

سَمِع الْلَّيْلُ ذُو الْنُّجُوْم أَنِيْنَا
وَهُو يَغْشَى الْمَدِيْنَة الْبَيْضَاءَ

فَانْحَنَى فَوْقَهَا كَمُسْتَرّق الْهَمْس
يُطِيْلُ الْسُّكُوْتَ وَالإصْغَاءَ

As it shrouded the White City,
The star-studded Night heard a groan

Forthwith, it bent over the city, as to catch some faint whispers,
While maintaining a long silence, listening intently

فَرَأَى أَهْلَهَا نِيَامَا كَأَهْل
الْكَهْف لا جَلَبَة ولا ضَوْضَاءَ

وَرَأَى الْسَّد خَلْفَهَا مُحْكَم
الْبُنْيَان وَالْمَاء يُشْبِه الْصَّحْرَاءَ

It saw its people, like the Cave Sleepers, sound asleep
With no noise of any kind whatsoever.

It also saw the Dam behind the City
Well-built, holding a vast body of water
Desert-like in appearance

كَان ذَاكَ الأنِيْن مِن حَجَر فِي
الْسَّد يَشْكُو الْمَقَادِر الْعَمْيَاءَ

أَي شَأْن يَقُوْل فِي الْكَوْن شَأْنِي
لَسْتُ شَيْئَا فِيْه وَلَسْتُ هَبَاءَ

The groan was coming from a little rock in the Dam,
Grumbling and muttering discontentedly about the blind fates.

Who am I in this universe? It questioned,
I am neither something of importance
Nor a dust particle flowing in the air

لا رُخَام أَنَا فَأُنَحَت تِمْثَالاً
وَلا صَخْرَة تَكُوْن بِنَاءَ

لَسْتُ أَرْضَاً فَأرتَشِف الْمَاءَ
أَو مَاءً فَأَرْوِي الْحَدَائِق الْغِنَاءَ

Neither alabaster to be turned into a graceful form
Nor a rock to be fashioned into an edifice

Neither soil that sips the water
Nor water that irrigates beautiful gardens

لَسْت دُرّاً تَنَافُس الْغَادَة الْحَسْنَاءُ
فِيْه الْمَلِيْحَة الْحَسْنَاءَ

لا أَنَا دَمْعَة وَلا أَنَا عَيْنٌ
لَسْتُ خَالا أَو وَجَنَّة حَمْرَاءَ

I am neither a pearl worn by a beautiful girl
To adorn herself with
And engage in a contest with another lovely female

I am not even a tear, an eye
A beauty mark, or a rosy cheek

حَجَرٌ أَغْبَرٌ أَنَا وَحَقِيْرٌ
لا جَمَالاً لا حِكْمَة لا مُضَاءَ

فَلأُغِادِر هَذَا الْوُجُوْدَ وَأَمْضِي
بِسَلام ، إِنِّي كَرِهْتُ الَبَقَاءَ

I am no more than a mere gray, insignificant rock,
Lacking beauty, bereft of wisdom and acuity

So let me exit this existence peacefully
For I can no longer abide my being

وَهَوَى مِن مَكَانِه ، وَهُو يَشْكُو الأَرْضَ
وَالْشُّهُبَ وَالْدُّجَى وَالْسَّمَاءَ

فَتَح الْفَجْرُ جَفْنُه فَإِذَا الْطُّوفَانُ
يَغْشَى الْمَدِيْنَة الْبَيْضَاءَ

Having said that, it left its place and fell
Denouncing the stars, the night, and the sky

No sooner had dawn parted its eyelids
Than the entire White City was under the flood

Translated by: Mahmoud Abbas Masoud

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