Adonis Diaries

Posts Tagged ‘Gilgamesh

Gilgamesh confronting the Storm

This mythic Face Off 

These Face off have been going on since antiquity in our region

Important note: This is a liberal translation of an epic poem by late Syrian poet Mohammad al Maghout.

It was written over 30 years ago; way before Desert Storm on Iraq in 1991, as if a premonition.

And No, the Eagle does not represent a symbol to any State or tribe, religion, or any culture.

Excellent poets perceive invariants in human history and rephrase them in indelible images.

 

Epic story of Storm attacking Old Eagle

Waiting for the storm to hit

How could anyone cope with a storm?

What could you do in a desert storm?

 

Where is the storm?

It is on the horizon, hesitating;

A tramp at the hotel entrance.

 

Old eagle, maybe the last of his species,

Lonely, quiet, waiting for the storm;

A chauffeur waiting for his master.

 

Old eagle is tired of tasting occasional serene clouds;

An old chef tasting the remains of a banquet.

 

Queen storm is taking her time in front of the mirror.

Old eagle is ready to chase out the storm up front.

 

What could he do with a worn out beak?

A Decrepit beak and deformed from frequent shattering to pieces on rocks.

How could old eagle hurry to meet the storm?

A tottering bicycle crossing river bed?

 

For years, the white feathers of Eagle have been dirty;

Dirtier than an old waiter’s apron.

 

A gentle breeze nudging old eagle from rock to rock,

From plain to plain;

A bored old soldier in a camp

Anxious for his last battle, confronting a fly.

 

A soothing breeze floated over old eagle;

He fluttered, a youth touched by the first girl.

Old eagle heaves a sigh; he is reminiscing youth

 

Strong wings spanning the valley, glittering with sweat.

Tiny birds, out of breath, trailing valiantly behind,

Mobs running after the King’s horse,

 

Chants hoarse, hallelujah feeble.

Old eagle is dozing, in the scorching sun;

Epoch stretching out.

 

Suddenly, the universe blackened;

The world is still;

So still that the silence created religions out of fear;

 

Old eagle’s tail is waving.

Old eagle is hopping in circle;

A baby lamb welcoming its mother.

 

The storm thundered and hastened;

An ice skater showing off.

 

Old eagle is whispering an old victory song;

An eagle fallen off mountain tops,

A bride with no pendants and no cries.

 

Old eagle opened his old beak and retreated

In respect of his old master and teacher.

 

Old eagle is spinning amid his broken plumes,

His shouts clacking like rifle bullets

A mass of blood proudly lecturing

On the art of thirsting and ripping apart enemies.

 

The storm danced around old eagle and sneaked away.

Old eagle is mad; he is jumping cat-like;

A frightened baby stumbling for the door knob;

A drunkard coming back in the bar

Kicked out a hundred times and coming back.

 

Old eagle is wailing like a baby.

The storm lost steam on the sea-shore,

Medals and crowns scattered.

The bludgeoned face of a boxer;

A drunk washing his face.

 

Mighty storm is aching:

It recollects that a tiny creature fought to death.

Mighty storm is sprawled on the beach:

A monstrous tent shrinking to a headgear;

Tears dropping in eagle’s shape.

Note: After approving another half a dozen of my poems I sent this unpoetic voice site the following poem: https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/puny-avatar-why-in-the-name-of-god/

It was approved and then immediately the site “suspended” me without providing reasons.

It is to be noted that the site never presented any constraints beforehand for joining or the kind of poems “satisfactory” to their “ideology”.

“Monolithic” religions in the Land: Copy/paste of ancient stories since 4000 BC

Note: Re-edit of “Assyrian myths transformed into Religious Stories in the Bibles and the Quran. posted in 2008″

The stories and myths in Assyrian and Sumerian mythologies were transformed into Jewish and Islamic sanctified stories.

These legends emerged in current Iraq (Assyria, Babylon and Ur) before 3500 BC or around 4000 years before the era of Islam.

The stories spread and moved into Jewish religious books, and deployed from Iraq to Palestine and then to Mecca,  Medinah, Yemen and the Mashreq (North Africa) countries.

There was presence of many foreign immigrants in the Arabian Peninsula.

For example, the young Iraqi from Mosul who served water and grapes to the Prophet Muhammad at Taif as its inhabitants were stoning Muhammad, and the Persian Salman, Suhaib and Bilal the Abyssinian…

These are some of the myths of ancient Iraq and corresponding in Islam.

1. The legend of the flood:

In an Assyrian mythology the gods determined to annihilate mankind and they warned Uttonbshtm and his wife and sons. He was to build a great ship and put a couple of each kind of animal. In the Koran the same story and details with the one difference is that the hero is Nou7 (Noah).

Archaeological excavations uncovered that the flood covered 300 miles in the old city of Ur.

Details of the flood are identical between Iraqi and Jewish mythology, and in the  Islamic text the flood was intended to  punish humans who have rotted in the ground except a good man, his family and a number of animal-build ship and resort group are excluded from it.

Send birds to explore the Earth after the flood recedes.
The Prophet Abraham came from Ur old Iraqi city in the South and brought with him the story of the flood.

2. Trip to heavengods Adaba corresponding story of ISRA ‘ and Mi’raj.

3. Journey to the sky: gods Etana, the bird Eagle offset in the Quran the Prophet Muhammad’s journey to the bright sky in Ascension.
4. The journey of Gilgamesh to paradise.
5. Paradise in the legends of Iraq in the Pharaonic monuments mentioned paradise and their descriptions. In both cases where the rivers and trees and eternal life, a garden of Eden.

Eden is a word derived from the word Eden Sumerian and means easy and flat ground and the location of the garden of Eden in the South of Mesopotamia.

The idea of paradise appeared and was invented by the Sumerians in Iraq and then moved to the Canaanites and then the Pharaohs then moved to Jews and Muslims.

6. The underworld of floors:  in Islam the 7 earths.
7. Demons and goblins appeared in legends of the old Iraq as set out in the Qur’an and Hadith.
8. The story of the beginning of the creation of the universe when Iraqi veterans (the sea was the first in the creation of the universe):  in the Qur’an (the throne over the water).
The journey to the underworld = Islam shake them down low.
Seven days seven nights – using the number seven is repeated seven earths skies in Islam, seven 7 days.

9. Expulsion from paradise and eternity: God’s wrath on the ethics for refusing his food and the expulsion of immortality and paradise to land in Islam expelled Adam from paradise for he ate of the tree was the same story in Jewish books (Torah) before Islam the same meaning of the Qur’an.

10. Hell-the seven gates of the underworld.
Big doormen in the underworld: equivalent in Islam there is paradise Ranger Rizwan guard fire.
Eternity of God is only matched in the Qur’an God live and not die.
Gilgamesh is grappling with the divine bull that represents seven years lean-lean in the Qur’an in seven years.
Repetition in speech when the Assyrians – Kan Muhammad repeats certain phrases a lot.
Cleansing, washing the God Oruro = offset ablution in Islam.

The God Enki restored life to the goddess Inanna after death = ISA Hayat returned the dead.
The God Enki eat 8 plants and fuck that befell it because of that = offset in Islam and Judaism the Adam ate from the tree and was cursed and the anger and the expulsion from paradise.
The God Enki became ill in his rib and Lady of the gods were invited to his recovery = corresponding create women’s rib.

11. The God Enlil sending plagues to kill humans in the story of Moses, = and in the Qur’an God take revenge from the people of Egypt sent a plague on them.
12.  Eternity is obedience to God = Islam to obey human beings to God their intervention paradise eternity.
13. Was thought in ancient Iraq that the kindness of God and satisfaction of human disease and saves lengthens age = and the same belief in Islam.

14. Babylonian goddess Ishtar Arabic versions were called LAT and ‘ Uzza and Manat (warrior goddesses in the Arabic Peninsula).
15. The rise of the goddess Inanna of death = in Islam Jesus resurrects the dead and God limit people and then animates them.

16. The separation of the soul from the body = Islam out of the spirit of death.
17. Pad in legends of Assyria and Babylon = palette and fatalism in Islam.
18. The legend of ancient Iraqi culture similar to the story of Adam and Eve and take out them from paradise.
19. A person must die when the Assyrian gods do = in Islam God decides when a human dies.

Note 1: What the author mentions as Assyrian mythology is a direct hand me down transcript from one Empire to another in Iraq and Greater Syria that I call The Land (countries west of the Euphrates River and including south west Turkey, current Syria, Lebanon, Palestine and Jordan).

The Assyrian Empire is one of the latest that conquered other empires in the Land. These mythologies go as far back as 4,000 years before Christian calendar, and span the Empires of Akkad, Sumer, Babylon, Canaan…

Note 2: What the western countries label as the 3 monolithic religions are in fact a single one in 3 main versions.

The Old Testament or Bible was written in Alexandria two centuries before the coming of Christ. The New testament was written in several languages: Byzantine Empire selected 4 Books that happened to be written in popular Greek (not the elite formal Greek).

All the many dozens of Books were labelled Heretics, burned, discarded, and lost for lack of heretic Christian sects to transcribe and disseminate.

The Quran was written in many Arabic slang languages (which are derived from the Aramaic, the language of the people in the Land. The third caliph Ibn Affan decided to rewrite the Quran in the Mecca slang of the tribe of Quraish.

Note 3: Actually, besides the mythical or typical stories of the Land, the Old Testament is a description of the customs and traditions of The Land, and everything else is pure historical falsification, kind of extending a history to roaming tribes.

For over a century now, Israel and the Zionist movement couldn’t locate a single archaeological finding that prove the existence of the Kingdoms of David or Solomon or any Jewish artefact: The Jews remained mostly bedouin tribes in the land of Canaan (current Palestine and southern parts of Syria and Lebanon) and never reached the seashore at any moment in their existence in Palestine

https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2009/09/19/complete-story-of-jesus-visit-to-jerusalem/

Note 4: References: book flight to paradise and hell in the legends of the old Iraq – a Ministry of culture and information, 1998-book mythology in Mesopotamia-Baghdad 1984 book of Ishtar and Tammuz and tragedy book epic of Gilgamesh – Beirut and many Arabic and translated books on religion and mythology in ancient Iraq Sumer, Assyria and Babylon Sami dj_jigga civilized dialogue-number: 2354-7/26/2008

Note 5: The Arabic text posted on FB by Zahrat Al Mandella

أساطير أشورية صارت مقدسات إسلاميةالأساطير والقصص ظهرت في العراق القديم في أشور وبابل قبل 3500 عام قبل الميلاد أي حوالي 4000 عام قبل عصر ظهور الإسلام.
وانتشرت وانتقلت إلى اليهود وادخلوها ضمن كتبهم الدينية والذين انتشروا وانتقلوا من العراق إلى فلسطين ومنها إلى المدينة المنورة وبلدان المشرق.

وكان هناك وجود للعراقيين في مكة وما جاورها فالشاب الذي قدم الماء والعنب للنبي محمد في الطائف عندما زارها للدعوة لدينه وقابله أهلها بالرجم بالحجارة كان شابا عراقيا مسيحيا من الموصل وكان في مكة والمدينة أشخاص من بلدان عديدة مثل صهيب الرومي وسلمان الفارسي وبلال الحبشي مما يعنى وجود مهاجرين وانتقال ثقافات وتلاقى وانتقال أفكار.
وهذه بعض الأساطير العراقية القديمة وما يقابلها في الإسلام:
– أسطورة الطوفان : في أساطير أشورية أن الآلهة عزمت على محق البشر وأنها أنذرت أوتونبشتم وزوجته بذلك فبنو سفينة عظيمة ووضعوا ا فيها زوجين من كل نوع من الحيوانات ونجو من الطوفان وفى القران نفس القصة والتفاصيل مع فارق واحد هو أن بطلها نوح بدل أوتو نبشتم وجود دلائل على وقوع طوفان نهرى حقيقي في مناطق من العراق في الألف الثالث قبل الميلاد.
من خلال الحفريات الأثرية وغطى الطوفان 300 ميل ووجدت في الحفريات آثار الطمي في مدينة أور من أثار الطوفان.
تفاصيل الطوفان متطابقة بين الأساطير العراقية واليهودية والنص الإسلامي الهدف من الطوفان عقاب البشر الذين افسدوا في الأرض باستثناء رجل صالح وعائلته وعدد من الحيوانات – بناء السفينة ولجوء المجموعة المستثناة من العقاب إليها.
إرسال طيور لاستطلاع الأرض بعد انحسار الطوفان.
– إبراهيم النبي جاء من أور المدينة العراقية القديمة في الجنوب وجلب معه قصة الطوفان.

– رحلة الإلهة إيتانا إلى السماء على طائر النسر يقابلها في القران رحلة النبي محمد على البراق إلى السماء في الإسراء والمعراج.
– رحلة جلجامش إلى الفردوس الأرضي.
– الجنة وردت في أساطير العراق ووردت في الآثار الفرعونية ذكر الجنة وأوصافها وفى كلتا الحالتين ذكر أن فيها انهار وأشجار وحياة أبدية كلمة جنة عدن – عدن كلمة عدن مشتقة من كلمة إيدن السومرية وتعنى سهل وارض منبسطة وموقع جنة عدن في جنوب وادي الرافدين وفكرة الفردوس والجنة ظهرت واخترعها السومريون في العراق ثم انتقلت إلى الكنعانيين ثم الفراعنة ثم انتقلت إلى اليهود والمسلمين.
– العالم السفلى مكون من طوابق = في الإسلام الأرضون السبع.
– الشياطين والعفاريت وردت في أساطير العراق القديم كما وردت في القرآن والحديث.
– في قصة بداية إنشاء الكون عند العراقيين القدماء (كان البحر الأول في خلق الكون) = في القرآن (كان عرشه على الماء).
الرحلة إلى العالم السفلى = في الإسلام يخسف بهم أسفل سافلين.
سبعة أيام سبعة ليال – استخدام الرقم سبعة يتكرر في الإسلام سموات سبع أرضون سبع سبعة أيام.
الطرد من الجنة والخلود: غضب الإله على آدابا لأنه رفض الطعام المقدم له وطرد من الخلود والجنة إلى ارض وفى الإسلام طرد ادم من الجنة لأنه أكل من الشجرة ووردت نفس القصة في كتب اليهود ( التوراة) قبل الإسلام بنفس المعنى الوارد في القرآن.
الجحيم – البوابات السبع للعالم السفلي.
الرحلة إلى العالم السفلى = في الإسلام يخسف بهم أسفل سافلين.
سبعة أيام سبعة ليال – استخدام الرقم سبعة يتكرر في الإسلام سموات سبع أرضون سبع سبعة أيام.
الطرد من الجنة والخلود: غضب الإله على آدابا لأنه رفض الطعام المقدم له وطرد من الخلود والجنة إلى ارض وفى الإسلام طرد ادم من الجنة لأنه أكل من الشجرة ووردت نفس القصة في كتب اليهود ( التوراة) قبل الإسلام بنفس المعنى الوارد في القرآن.
الجحيم – البوابات السبع للعالم السفلي.
كبير البوابين في العالم السفلى يقابله في الإسلام رضوان حارس الجنة وهناك حارس النار.
الخلود من نصيب الآلهة فقط يقابله في القران الله حي لا يموت.
جلجامش يصارع الثور الإلهي الذي يمثل سبع سنوات عجاف – في القرآن سبع سنوات عجاف.
التكرار في الكلام عند الأشوريين – كان النبي محمد يكرر بعض العبارات كثيرا.
التطهير بغسل اليدين الإلهة أورورو = يقابله الوضوء في الإسلام.
الإله أنكي أعاد الحياة إلى الإلهة أنانا بعد موتها = عيسى أعاد الحياة للأموات.
الإله أنكي أكل من النباتات الثمانية واللعنة التي حلت عليه بسبب ذلك = يقابل ذلك في الإسلام واليهودية قصة ادم الذي أكل من الشجرة وحلت عليه اللعنة والغضب وطرد من الجنة.
الإله أنكي أصيب بمرض في ضلعه ودعيت سيدة من الآلهة لشفائه = يقابل ذلك خلق المرأة من الضلع.
– الإله إنليل يرسل الأوبئة لقتل البشر= وفي قصة موسى في القران الله ينتقم من أهل مصر بإرسال الوباء عليهم.
– الخلود مرتبط بطاعة البشر للآلهة = وفى الإسلام طاعة البشر لله تدخلهم الجنة دار الخلود.
– ساد الاعتقاد في العراق القديم أن عطف الآلهة ورضاها ينقذ البشر من الأمراض ويطيل أعمارهم = ونفس الاعتقاد في الإسلام.
– الإلهة البابلية عشتار كانت لها نسخ عربية تسمى اللات والعزى ومناة.
– نهوض الإلهة أنانا من الموت = في الإسلام عيسى أحيا الموتى والله يميت الناس ثم يحييهم.
– انفصال الروح عن الجسد = في الإسلام خروج الروح من الجسد علامة الموت.
– لوح القدر في أساطير أشور وبابل = لوح القدر والقضاء والقدر في الإسلام.
– أسطورة أدابا العراقية القديمة تشابه قصة ادم وحواء وخرجهما من الجنة.
– لا بد للإنسان أن يموت عندما تقرر الآلهة الأشورية ذلك = في الإسلام الله يقرر متى يموت الإنسان.

المراجع:

كتاب الرحلة إلى الفردوس والجحيم في أساطير العراق القديم – إصدار وزارة الثقافة والإعلام العراقية 1998 –
وكتاب الأساطير في بلاد مابين النهرين – بغداد 1984
وكتاب عشتار ومأساة تموز وكتاب ملحمة جلجامش – بيروت وكثير من الكتب العربية والمترجمة عن الدين والأساطير في العراق القديم سومر وأشور وبابل

سامي كوكابي الحوار المتمدن – العدد: 2354 – 2008 / 7 / 26

 Syrian’s poet Adonis sends an Open Letter to Syrian President

My namesake Adonis, Syrian poet Ali Hamid Saeed Esber, born in 1930 in the mountain village of Qassibin, was awarded Germany’s prestigious Goethe Prize Wednesday.  He is an Alaouit (an Islamic sect that Sunnis considered as heretic for centuries, and still do in many ways, as is the family of Al Assad in power). Actually, my dad named me after the poet, who was already famous in the 50’s.  He is thus an older version of me.

This is an abridged translation from Arabic of the open letter published in the Lebanese daily Al-Safi (sentences in parenthesis are mine):

“Neither reality nor mind believes that democracy is about to be instituted in Syria, right after the eventual fall of the Assad regime.  However, it is not admissible to accept this violent security regime in Syria.

Without democracy, Syria is going to surely head to hell.  We have to steadily inch toward democratic institutions.  Western Democracy was unknown to modern Arab States, as it was historically unknown in Arabic culture.(The closest imitation was an assembly of leaders to come to a consensus: Shawra)

The pre-requisites for stable democratic systems are:

First, taking society out of the political cultural realm of “heavenly dictates” to the “earthly individual human rights”.  Basically, we have to separate State civil responsibilities from religious dogma.  The various religious political forms of government have killed citizens, physically and mentally, according to “religious laws”.

Second, democracy needs a climate of freedom of speech, opinions, and expressions:  Small minds can reduce rich texts into nothingness.

Third, leniency in difference of opinion is good, but what is required is equality under the laws of the land in matter of human rights.  The regime Baath Party failed to tailor-make a new modern suit and was comfortable resuming the old-fashioned, archaic traditional religious custom mentalities. The regime Baath Party failed in its mission of integrating society on the basis of a secular State.

The experiences in the various political ideologies failed in the Arab World to forming a modern citizen: they identified the citizen as related to his religious affiliation or tribal membership.

Fourth, the Syrian officials have to admit that their practices and application of the better principles of the Baath ideology came very short to target in forming a secular citizen.

“The Socialist Baath Party has not remained in power this long because of the strength of its ideology, but because of the power of its iron fist. Experience shows that this fist… can impose hegemony for a limited time only. It seems your destiny Mr. President (Bashar el Assad) is to sacrifice yourself for your mistakes and to give back voice to the people and let them decide”.

What a stable government requires?

First, identifying a citizen as a separate entity of his affiliation to his religious sect, tribe,…

Second, imposing equal rights under the laws of a secular land, regardless of genders or religious affiliation…

Third, reverting the sole power of extending legitimacy to the people…” (End of quotes)

The poet Adonis has refrained from openly criticizing Syrian authorities during the uprising. But he launched a scathing attack three weeks ago on all Arab rulers as “leaving behind nothing except breakdown, backwardness, retreat, bitterness and torture. They gathered power. They did not build a society. They turned their countries into a space of slogans without any cultural or human content.”

He said the uprising in Syria would test whether the Arab revolution would succeed in building “human civic life” that rises above religion.  Adonis fears that Arab uprisings might usher in Islamist rulers: He expressed skepticism that even “moderate Islam” would offer rights to non-Muslims.

Note 1: “The selection committee Goethe Prize considered Adonis the most important Arab poet of his generation and granted him the prize for his cosmopolitan (work) and contribution to international literature,” the German government said in a statement. “The pagan poet” will receive the 50,000 euro ($70,320) prize, which is awarded every three years, at a ceremony in Frankfurt, Goethe’s home city, on August 28.  The Syrian poet Adonis had championed democracy and secular thought in the Middle East, and is still very engaged to changing political and social structures.

Note 2: The Second link is in Arabic رسالة مفتوحة إلى الرئيس بشار الأسد) الإنسان، حقوقه وحرياته، أو الهاويه ,which was published yesterday in Lebanon’s daily al-Safir.

Note 3:  The poet Adonis was educated in a French high school before graduating from Damascus University in the 1950s and moving to Beirut, the cultural heart of the Arab Middle East.  He left Beirut during the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982 and moved to France, but he still visits Damascus.

The poet Adonis has little sympathy for theories that seek to mold the Middle East into a single Arab Islamic culture, marginalizing ethnic minorities and diversity of thought. Adonis is a self-styled literary “revolutionary”:  He broke away from traditional Arab poetry, which from pre-Islamic times, espoused simple forms and language to convey profound themes about politics, love, culture and philosophy.

Adonis wrote in “Hand of Poetry, Open the book of the Horizon“: “I think that I’m a wave, traveling, since the days of Gilgamesh (a Sumerian king who ruled more than 4,000 years ago), toward Beirut and the Arabs”

Adonis hails from a long tradition of Arab poets who have acted as a force for modernity against strict interpretations of religious texts.  Adonis insists on putting religious topics into their proper context, historically, economically, and culturally.  Even supporters find it hard to follow the intense imagery and complex verse that has been his hallmark.

Note 4: When people asks me how I happened to be named after the “Greek God of Beauty” Adonis, I tell them that Adon is a Phoenician God of the first City-State of Byblos, the husband of Ashtarout (Astarte), another beauty.  I am not that beautiful:  I was saved the aches of the other spectrum of emotions…Khaled Yacoub Oweis wrote the announcement of the award in Amman (Reuters) on Wed May 25, 2011 9:04pm EDT

Note 5:  I read this piece of news that the open letter was published in Al Safir from the link https://nabeelblog.wordpress.com/…/adonis-open-letter-to-president

Note 6: The radical Islamists, particularly the Syrian kinds, have been lashing at Adonis in every occasion since the uprising.

Face off: Gilgamesh against Storm

Important note: This is a liberal translation of an epic poem by late Syrian poet Mohammad al Maghout.  It was written over 30 years ago; way before Desert Storm on Iraq in 1991.

I sent this poem to a new site (opened last month with only four members) that invited me to join and share my poems.  After “approving” a dozen poems and commenting laudatory on them, the “administrator ” amazed me by demanding clarification:  He wanted to know if this poem refers to American soldiers!  I replied that this story is about the epic struggle of mankind against calamities; natural and man-made.

I insisted that the eagle does not represent a symbol to any State or tribe, religion, or any culture.  I have a mind to ask this tight administrator what in the animal kingdom is convenient for his imagination to fight a storm. I received no reply and the poem was not shown on the site.

Excellent poets perceive invariants in human history and rephrase them in indelible images.

Epic story of Storm and Old Eagle

Waiting for the storm to hit

How could anyone cope with a storm?

What could you do in a desert storm?

Where is the storm?

It is on the horizon, hesitating;

A tramp at the hotel entrance.

Old eagle, maybe the last of his species,

Lonely, quiet, waiting for the storm;

A chauffeur waiting for his master.

Old eagle is tired of tasting occasional serene clouds;

An old chef tasting the remains of a banquet.

Queen storm is taking her time in front of the mirror.

Old eagle is ready to chase out the storm up front;

What could he do with a worn out beak?

Decrepit and turned straight from frequent shattering to pieces on rocks.

How could old eagle hurry to meet the storm?

A tottering bicycle crossing river bed?

For years, old eagle’s white feathers have been dirty;

Dirtier than an old waiter’s apron.

A gentle breeze nudging old eagle from rock to rock,

From plain to plain;

A bored old soldier in a camp

Anxious for his last battle, confronting a fly.

A soothing breeze floated over old eagle;

He fluttered, a youth touched by the first girl.

Old eagle heaves a sigh; he is reminiscing youth

Strong wings spanning the valley, glittering with sweat.

Tiny birds, out of breath, trailing valiantly behind,

Mobs running after the King’s horse,

Chants hoarse, hallelujah feeble.

Old eagle is back dozing, in the scorching sun;

Epoch stretching out.

Suddenly, the universe blackened;

The world is still;

So still that the silence created religions out of fear;

Old eagle’s tail is waving.

Old eagle is hopping in circle;

A baby lamb welcoming its mother.

The storm thundered and hastened;

An ice skater showing off.

Old eagle is whispering an old victory song;

An eagle fallen off mountain tops,

A bride with no pendants and no cries.

Old eagle opened his old beak and retreated

In respect of his old master and teacher.

Old eagle is spinning amid his broken plumes,

His shouts clacking like rifle bullets

A mass of blood proudly lecturing

On the art of thirsting and ripping apart enemies.

The storm danced around old eagle and sneaked away.

Old eagle is mad; he is jumping cat-like;

A frightened baby stumbling for the door knob;

A drunkard coming back in the bar

Kicked out a hundred times and coming back.

Old eagle is wailing like a baby.

The storm lost steam on the sea-shore,

Medals and crowns scattered.

The bludgeoned face of a boxer;

A drunk washing his face.

Mighty storm is aching:

It recollects that a tiny creature fought to death.

Mighty storm is sprawled on the beach:

A monstrous tent shrinking to a headgear;

Tears dropping in eagle’s shape.

Note: After approving another half a dozen of my poems I sent this unpoetic voice site the following poem: https://adonis49.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/puny-avatar-why-in-the-name-of-god/

It was approved and then immediately the site “suspended” me without providing reasons.

It is to be noted that the site never presented any constraints beforehand for joining or the kind of poems “satisfactory” to their “ideology”.

So, what’s going on in August?

In this hot August of Lebanon it is sort of “branle-bas de combat” or getting ready to waging war, literally and figuratively, internally and externally.  Thousands of Lebanese immigrants selected August to pay a visit to their motherland.  Many have come to get married.  The process of getting married can be extremely lengthy and complicated among Christians of various sects and as easy as dispatching a spouse among Moslems where the father sign the contract on behalf of his son and then buy an airplane ticket to the new bride to join a husband she had never met face to face.

For example, Christian immigrants have to reconcile with different mentalities:  In Europe, the States want civil marriage prior to religious one on the ground that religious contracts are not valid by law.  This rational is reverse in Lebanon: You need to get married religiously first, otherwise, registering your civil  marriage that you contracted outside Lebanon might turn out a headache.  Thus, if you get married religiously in Lebanon then, you better keep mute about this landslide event when you get re-married civil in Europe.  As far as I recall, religious marriage in the USA are as valid as civil marriage:  The priest signature on the contract is highly respected.  (I might be wrong, so do not hesitate to correct me).

One of the fiance asked me: “Do you think a priest might read my vow written in English?”  I replied:”If you locate a priest willing to allow you to state your own version of why you want to marry then, I will help you edit your vow and teach the priest to read it”.  As far as I know, the only acceptable version is that “What has been linked in the sky no man can cancel it”

My niece is one of the prospected candidate to be wed by the end of August.  She was invited to the church for the wedding of one of her closest friend.  I sensed that she might need support and I accompanied her.  She was all eyes and all ears to the procedure and was awed to what the priest preached and what the couple read together in Arabic; she could have a second thought if she took seriously what religion demands of its hapless souls. By the way, the elder brother take seriously being “unchurch” attendant.  You might think he is a Jehovah Witness but he thinks he is smarter than these archaic believers of the written archaic Books.  I still cannot fathom the unidirectional attitude of young people as they learn to read and taking strong positions.  I think taking strong positions is a matter of immature ignorance.

Anyway, emigrants coming from the northern cold front of “developed” States in Europe land in Lebanon with haggard pale faces and much weight loss:  I think too much biking among several jobs under cold rains in one of the factors for their nervous wreckage.  Within a week, the pale-faced creatures acquire colors and recover their normal weight with a few extra pounds.  I was invited to an open air restaurant called Gilgamesh to meet the brothers of my niece’s fiance and each of the large platters could easily feed four people of the cold front guests.

I saw a reportage on our local TV of a German family visiting Lebanon; they were apprehensive before they arrive to Lebanon.  Now the kids don’t want to return to Germany:  They are having too much fun and seeing the sea everyday and discovering the high mountains everyday and eating abundant assorted food.  Obviously, they are seeing the hidden ugly realities of Lebanon and what kinds of monstrous crap the Lebanese have to swallow and endure in order to survive the decisions and activities of pseudo governments.  I am not going to be the bad mouthed citizen jeopardizing this touristic season.  Anyway, the fasting season of 40 days for the Moslems is in a couple of days and prices of all kinds of sugar, rice, fruits, and vegetables will easily double.

Most non-Lebanese touring Lebanon in August are from the Arabic Peninsula States. Temperature there range from 50 to 60 degrees Celsius; people are prohibited leaving their homes from 11 am to 3 pm.  Temperatures in Lebanon are 15 degrees less, but high enough for Northern Europeans to die like flies.

In the external front, this arrogant and racist State of Israel has tried to start problems with Lebanon last week.  The Israeli army invaded our borders in the village of Adeissy in order to removing a tree that obstructed vision  of its surveillance cameras.  The UN waving of flags was of no use.  The Lebanese army sent warning shots but the Israeli bombed the army positions and killed two soldiers and one daily reporter and injured several civilians.  One of the injured Lebanese soldier shot down an Israeli officer and another enemy soldier.  The next day, Israel learned to coordinate with the UN forces to removing a lousy tree that made several victims but confirmed the steadfastness of the Lebanese army to denying arrogant Israel any further humiliation of the Lebanese.  Hezbollah was ready to supporting the army if confrontation escalated and that is why Israel relented in its stupid activities.

The next day of that engagement, Canada ordered its citizens to scrap visiting Lebanon from their plans.  Three Canadian young relatives visiting us laughed out their government scare tactics saying that Canada usually wants to save money repatriating its citizens.  Young Joseph is a funny guy; he recounted that he was among his Lebanese relatives and they were speaking in Arabic; so Joseph dozed off until he heard his name followed by a hilarious loud laughing.  Joseph asked them: “Am I the one concerned?”  They laughed some more and reassured him “Well, it is nothing”  Joseph says that he managed to capture a third of a conversation. How? Joseph clarified “Lebanese use words from Arabic, French, and English in the same sentence.”  So, Joseph assume that he is understanding something.  Joseph’s father (a Lebanese) did not make the effort to teach him and his two sisters Arabic or encouraged them to  speak Arabic in his presence.  If Joseph’s father were Jew, Joseph would have learned archaic Hebrew; the most archaic language still in existence.

Actually, marrying Lebanese are settled or settling abroad.  No young Lebanese can afford to rent or buy a wretched small apartment in Beirut and the district of Metn.  Real Estates prices jumped 600% in the last two years.

Note:  At the peak of the tourism season, the government is reminded doing extensive road works and spreading asphalt.  Traffic congestion is thus at its peak.


adonis49

adonis49

adonis49

September 2020
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