Monday, January 29, 2007

Iraq War Grief Daily Witness Day 11

Residents grieve over the bodies of relatives killed in simultaneous bomb attacks in Baghdad, January 22, 2007.
(Kareem Raheem/Reuters)

You Tell Us What to Do
by Faiz Ahmed Faiz
translated by Agha Shahid Ali

When we launched life
on the river of grief,
how vital were our arms, how ruby our blood.
With a few strokes, it seemed,
we would cross all pain,
we would soon disembark.
That didn't happen.
In the stillness of each wave we found invisible currents.
The boatmen, too, were unskilled,
their oars untested.
Investigate the matter as you will,
blame whomever, as much as you want,
but the river hasn't changed,
the raft is still the same.
Now you suggest what's to be done,
you tell us how to come ashore.

When we saw the wounds of our country
appear on our skins,
we believed each word of the healers.
Besides, we remembered so many cures,
it seemed at any moment
all troubles would end, each wound heal completely.
That didn't happen: our ailments
were so many, so deep within us
that all diagnoses proved false, each remedy useless.
Now do whatever, follow each clue,
accuse whomever, as much as you will,
our bodies are still the same,
our wounds still open.
Now tell us what we should do,
you tell us how to heal these wounds.


RubDMC said...

for peace

anniethena said...

Peace, and witness

olivia said...


ask said...

I witness.

moira said...


musing graze said...


You cannot make Remembrance grow
by Emily Dickinson

You cannot make Remembrance grow
When it has lost its Root—
The tightening the Soil around
And setting it upright
Deceives perhaps the Universe
But not retrieves the Plant—
Real Memory, like Cedar Feet
Is shod with Adamant—
Nor can you cut Remembrance down
When it shall once have grown—
Its Iron Buds will sprout anew
However overthrown—

morrigan said...

I witness.

"I know. But I do not approve. And I am not resigned."
from Dirge Without Music
by Edna St. Vincent Millay

roses said...

For peace and consolation