Tuesday, July 02, 2013

Reasons

      Because in the distance between
when we die and when we forget about it
is where our happiness is pitted;

      Because in the intensity of the green
I seek respite from your drenched words and
pretend that your life doesn't trudge along elsewhere;

      Because in the middle of the woods you only grunted
when I told you that I love you, and I took that to mean
"Yes, me too, very much," and smiled to myself;

      Because the comfort of thinking that this is all there is
is seeping back in, and that the world begins with
my mud-crusted shoes and ends with the jargon in my head;

      Because the possibilities of all the faces passing me by
passes along with them, and their beaming eyes bore through me
holes as big and blue as the sky, that they don't even look through;

      Because I promised, if given another chance, I would grab on to it
though I don't know what that means; and I made a vow of goodness
to a God I don't believe in--and I wonder if He believes in me.

(Originally posted on July 6th, 2006)

13 comments:

_z. said...

Because you are who you are and what you are, with all the meanings and memories this carries, your words flow like the poetry of a river, and punch through the heart like warm iron on a hot and humid summer's eve.

"Because I promised, if given another chance, I would grab on to it
though I don't know what that means; and I made a vow of goodness
to a God I don't believe in--and I wonder if He believes in me."

this is ... just beautiful.

good job ash.

arch.memory said...

Thank you so much, Ziad! (Sorry, I go tongue-tied in comments, especially ones like this...)

hillz said...

غريب!
المقطع الأخير عن الفرصة الثانية هي تماماً ما كتبت عنه منذ يومين..
نقسم أننا لن نضيِّع هذه الفرصة إن حصلنا عليها وعندما نحصل عليها نعود إلى سابق عهدنا متناسين وعدنا السابق..
أتابع قصائدك منذ مدة.. أكمِل بقصائد ممتعة أخرى..

Scheherazade said...

i feel like such a voyeur when i read your poems Ashraf. you bare so much. and this one is so fresh i even smell the mud from your Vermont jaunt.

it is beautiful. and sad to me too. "because in the middle of the woods you only grunted
when I told you that I love you, and I took that to mean "Yes, me too, very much," and smiled to myself".

there is so much aching...and a shiny hope too.

yasmin

arch.memory said...

Hilal, how I wish at times like this I could type back in Arabic! But for now, a mere transliterated but earnest Shukran will have to do. Thank you for your comment; I am glad to know that you're reading.

And Yasmin, your comments are always so heartfelt. If it's any consolation, I was feeling just as much of a voyeur yesterday reading Wet Poems. I guess that is why we write and read poetry, after all...

hashem said...

Because I promised, if given another chance, I would grab on to it
though I don't know what that means...

the fear is that this second chance will never come....and we'll be just waiting....

good poem...3an jad...

arch.memory said...

Hashem, isn't that everyone's fear? Thanks for the comment, 3an jadd ;)

katy said...

my nose is that dry kind of blocked this morning. i don't know if that has anything to do with anything at all, but i had to tell someone.

i read this poem when there were no comments, i thought about commenting, but wasn't sure exactly what to say. i've read it at least 4 times now, and am still not sure what to say. everyone else has a lot to say, and i'm usually prepared with a few lines. at least, most times, if all else fails, i can pick out my favorite line(s).

something about this poem, though, is a little bit too real. at least too real for me to pretend like it's just a poem and this is just a comment.

Cecilia said...

There's an uplifting kind of sadness to this poem that everyone can benefit from. At least to me, that's how it feels like...that I am not alone. Is that a selfish act? I don't think so.

This is such a beautiful that speaks volumes. And in my mind's eye, this is a poem with hands that reached out to touch the hearts of many.

Thank you, A.

Kay said...

Ash.- since you like to use Arabic

في ثنايا كلماتك إنسانيةٌ تريد أن تنتفض على إنسانيتها
تريد أن تجد نفسها لتجدد ذاتها
أن تؤكد ذاتها لتفهم وجودها
لكن... تبقى إنسانية إنسان
يمر الزمن وتضيع الفرص
تتشتت الأفكار وتزهق الكلمات
ويبقى الإنسان يبحث عن نفسه
عن صدى إنسانيته

I loved this piece
so true... so you

arch.memory said...

Katy, you--of all people--don't need to say anything, dear. But thanks for trying :)

Cecilia, I don't think it's selfish at all, that desire to feel not alone. If anything, it must be quite the opposite. Isn't that why we write after all, in order not to feel alone? Thank you.

And Kay, how can I thank you, aziz? Your words... that's a poem all of its own! Shukran...

Erin said...

this is one of the most poignant pieces I've read in so long, such an exposure of your innermost thoughts and feelings... and those final lines, wow... wonderful. Thank you for sharing something so very personal Ashraf.

Russell Ragsdale said...

Hey Ash, I also read this poem a few times before I could comment. One reads a lot of poems where the words are comfortably close and friendly (with just that little tease of danger in them). The words just flow and response is easy. But one reads a long time waiting for that moment when anxiety and yearning makes a moment too real. Thanks for this, my friend!