For Your Thursday Afternoon: (Arab and) Arabic Poetry

Sargon Boulus

From Sinan Antoon and Jadaliyya, Two (More) Poems by Sargon Boulus

“Railroad” and “A Pouch of Dirt.” I love reading the collection this way, a few poems at a time. (Much more from Boulus here.)

Also from Jadaliyya, a New Poem from Khulood

Khulood is a writer who lives in Saudi Arabia; full name not provided. The poem is “behind the sun.”

NYU Press and NYU Abu Dhabi Announce the Launch of the Library of Arabic Literature

Well, this isn’t actually their first announcement, but I think it’s the first naming the editorial and advisory boards. They note: “Samples of ongoing translations along with the original Arabic texts will be made available in an online forum. The first LAL volume is expected to appear in late 2011.”

Over 7,000 poets in UAE poetry competition

The ‘Prince of Poets’ is a cultural competition that was launched in Abu Dhabi in April 2007…

Arab poet makes rare visit to UH

Adonis continues the publicity rounds for his new collection. Apparently, he was introduced by our friend Hosam Aboul-Ela, who translated Sonallah Ibrahim’s Stealth (among other things). No quotes from the talk, although apparently “The lecture was outstanding….”

More about Adonis from Qadita:
أدونيس: أعُدّ الآن آخر دواويني الشعرية وبعدها سأتوقف عن الشعر

Adonis is still working on poetry, but next—his memoirs.

Poetry at the Khalil Sakakini Cultural Center

This site has translations of a number of Palestinian poets (as well as poems written in English by diaspora Palestinians). Did you know? I didn’t.

Wild River Review: INTERVIEW – Love and Strange Horses – The Freedom of Poetry:
A Conversation with Poet Nathalie Handal

From Palestinian-American poet Nathalie Handal: “My poems recount what I can’t to myself—silence collapsing into non-silence.”

B-Beirut: A New Group for Poets (and Other Writers) in Lebanon

Interested? Check out their Facebook page or blog.


  1. Thank you!
    Though I would like to have some Egyptian poetry for my Thursday lunch too)

    1. What about…

      Iman Mersal’s Simply Sleeping

      He bites his lip suppressing an anger
      caused by reasons he cannot recall.
      He sleeps deeply,
      the palms holding his head up
      make him look like the soldiers
      dozing in midnight trucks
      as they shut their eyelids
      on piles of images,
      letting their souls spin
      until they suddenly turn into angels.

      And more Mersal here:

      1. how nice of you! Thank you very much

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