One L(ove)

January 23, 2009

Poetry Fridays: Don’t Ask Me for That Love Again

Filed under: Uncategorized — galileehitchhiker @ 1:51 pm
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The great Pakistani poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz

The great Pakistani poet Faiz Ahmed Faiz

Sorry for being MIA for the past two weeks. I have been incredibly busy with school (yes, the 9th circle of hell opened on the 12th of this month) and also with work. So after I get home, I rarely have the strength to post something. But I will try my best to do so regularly.

Yesterday night, I read a review of a new book that is coming out (or already has come out) about the life of Arthur Rimbaud, one of my favorite poets ever. The book focuses mostly on the stormy affair between Rimbaud and the poet Paul Verlaine. After reading the review of the book (which the critic panned), it made me realize how long it has been since I’ve read poetry — or a single poem for that matter! For this reason, I’ve decided to dedicate this blog on Fridays to poetry, thereby forcing me to read a poem. I’ll post poems that are my favorite ones and that have in a sense moved me, thereby hoping that they’ll have the same kind of impact on you. So to start it off, here’s a poem that was written by a Pakistani poet that will always be dear to my heart:

“Don’t Ask Me for That Love Again” by Faiz Ahmed Faiz

That which then was ours, my love,
don’t ask me for that love again.
The world then was gold, burnished with light —
and only because of you. That’s what I had believed.
How could one weep for sorrows other than yours?
How could one have any sorrow but the one you gave?
So what were these protests, these rumors of injustice?
A glimpse of your face was evidence of springtime.
The sky, wherever I looked, was nothing but your eyes.
If You’d fall into my arms, Fate would be helpless.

All this I’d thought, all this I’d believed.
But there were other sorrows, comforts other than love.
The rich had cast their spell on history:
dark centuries had been embroidered on brocades and silks.
Bitter threads began to unravel before me
as I went into alleys and in open markets
saw bodies plastered with ash, bathed in blood.
I saw them sold and bought, again and again.
This too deserves attention. I can’t help but look back
when I return from those alleys –what should one do?
And you still are so ravishing –what should I do?
There are other sorrows in this world,
comforts other than love.
Don’t ask me, my love, for that love again.

A good analysis of the poem is found here.

Currently listening to: John Coltrane – Giant Steps

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