Friday Finds: A Discussion of Ra’ad Abdulqadir’s ‘Except for This Unseen Thread’ with Mona Kareem & Sinan Antoon

This March, Ugly Duckling Presse published Mona Kareem’s fine-boned translations of Ra’ad Abdulqadir’s Except for This Unseen Thread:

As Kareem writes in her introduction:

Some of Ra’ad’s poems feel like screenshots from horror movies, in which objects move and humans turn out to be ghosts. The reader will sense the stillness in his scenery, the cinematic eye producing frames that reveal no signs of life apart from the flashing light of a car trapped in a hole, a window finally touched by a child’s rock, a coin rolling down the bread queues, or a bowl of soup waiting for somebody’s mouth. The poems generate a new power from escapism—an escapism based not on denial, but on the adoption of poetry as an everyday lens. 

On May 27, Kareem joined poet and novelist Sinan Antoon — who has called Abdulqadir “a poet’s poet” — to discuss Except for This Unseen Thread. A recording of the full Zoom event is available on YouTube:


Ra’ad Abdul Qadir’s ‘Minorities’

‘A Song for the Lightning Bird’