Saturday, 5 October 2013

shake us, we, the palms of the wound


The leaves asleep under the wind
are the wounds’ ship,
and the ages collapsed on top of each other
are the wound’s glory,
and the trees rising out of our eyelashes
are the wound’s lake.
The wound is to be found on bridges
where the grave lengthens
and patience goes on to no end
between the shores of our love and death.
The wound is a sign,
and the wound is a crossing too.




If I had a harbor in the land
of dreams and mirrors, if I had a ship,
if I had the remains
of a city, if I had a city
in the land of children and weeping,
I would have written all this down for the wound’s sake,
a song like a spear
that penetrates trees, stone, and sky,
soft like water
unbridled, startling like conquest.





Rain down on our desert
O world adorned with dream and longing.
Pour down, and shake us, we, the palms of the wound,
tear out branches from trees that love the silence of the wound,
that lie awake staring at its pointed eyelashes and soft hands.



World adorned with dream and longing
world that falls on my brow
like the lash of a wound,
don’t come close—the wound is closer—
don’t tempt me—the wound is more beautiful.
That magic that your eyes had flung
on the last kingdoms—
the wound has passed over it,
passed and did not leave a single sail
to tempt toward salvation, did not leave
a single island behind.


from Adonis, The Wound, tr. by Khaled Mattawa, 
with my thanks to the Black Sun for this discovery

(for e.)


  1. i read and saw this and then i left the house and walked beside the yellow forest. i do not say in the yellow forest because as i walked the yellow leaves which were held out on branches by the trees were so far away i knew i could never truly reach them. and while i felt, i will surely die of this longing for yellow, the yellow leaves radiating their colour, the colour not even truly residing in them but through them, i could not even do this. i could not even die.

    she wears a wedding ring. what is she married to? desire? creation? destruction? love? are these but four words much like four winds?


    1. i saw the photo of the yellow forest, and it radiated unspeakable longing.

      she wears a silver ring, it is not a wedding ring, but it has a spiral-like pattern that is, sometimes, similar to a silvery serpent. but yes, she is married to all this, i think...

  2. vin atat de multe cuvinte in mine privind aceasta postare,atat de multe,pentru ca atat de multe cuprinde ea (chiar daca nu am inteles cat trebuie poezia,am tot intrat in dictionar,insa nu am reusit sa ii dau in minte intregul,cu toate detaliile,dar e ca si cand le-as simti). rar am vazut cum o intrupare poate sa isi aproprieze intreaga fiinta a lumii,cum poate fiecare gest al cuiva sa ia in el copacii toamnei,abia schitatele lumini , pasii de valuri ai intunericului; si tot rar am vazut acest fapt in toata nuditatea lui,abia mascata de un obiect,abia aratata,am impresia ca ceea ce este de spus ramane acolo,intre pletele ei negre,mai totul se termina asa cum m-am gandit intotdeauna:cu doar o infima inscriptie,cu mii de intelesuri,restul este povestit pe larg doar in istoria larga a lumii,pentru care se zice ca ni se dau toate aceste vieti.
    sunt cuprinsa de mirare si duiosie,nu stiu ce sa aleg mai intai din starile mele,se schimba la fiecare vers si imagine,ramane doar impresia ca cineva se joaca pe acest zid alb si arborii se misca,in vantul serii

    1. draga, că îţi place atât de mult este bucuria şi recompensa mea - ce m-aş face fără ele, dăruite de tine atât de frumos şi simplu?

  3. I'll give you the poetry if you give me a phone no.!



    there's a passionate intensity to this whole post that is simply amazing and startling, as if the black were shimmering.

    Hope all is well?


    1. but the black was all shimmering, even the black sun was :-)

      now we have to negociate for that phone no!!! :-)

    2. yeah, but the shimmering was only a reflection of another light (okay, okay, enough of this mutual back-scratching already! ..enjoyable though it is!)

      Okay, I'll see you and raise you a bit. What's have ya got? Show.

  4. oh, there is something else that is important for me and must be said, the transformation in the woman between photographs, especially between the first of her and the second. in the first she might be a child, such naivité and wonder and then in the second she is most definitely a woman, brimming with assured sensuality. she might, in fact, be two distinct people. i wonder on the importance of noting this in all people and even in ourselves. how are we to understand any reality except through flux in all directions?


    1. i love this terrible power of transformation that photography has: though it isn't right to put it like this, photography has the power to make this constant flux of transformation visible, and startling too. that is why i love portraits. i think it is a tremendous and very tender art, so difficult to take a good portrait. a true one, beyond the surface true.

  5. another beautiful masterpeice. hi Roxana.
    well my dream is[in relation to your photos and the text,I am not responsible for this haha kidding.

    the sweet perfumed essence of mother earth's wound.the featheredged necklace prayer bead cutting into the flesh the dissolution of the mind and terrestrial pathways
    ew that final abstraction wrapped up my thoughts

    sky kisses to you.

    1. but this is wonderful, Madeleine, yes, it could be so, i think: "the sweet perfumed essence of mother earth's wound."

      thank you~~~

  6. As with Derrida, 'touch' reifies our understanding of interior versus exterior, opening versus impenetrability, object versus subject, wound versus an archipelago of islets gifted to the sun.

    1. did you read all this into my humble post, Prospero???!!!
      i need my academic hat to answer this, as one of the Bridge's oldest friends would say (i mean Black Sun, who taught me this expression :-).

  7. this post is so full, so perfumed and so intense that I need time to capture all the meanings and all the shades of this beautiful world. it is fascinating how the wound has so much life and such glory. i think only you can do this, seize all these hidden meanings and show them with such simplicity.

    1. perhaps everyone of us can, if only we can learn to look at things and let go of what we _think_ they are, or they _should_ be...

      thank you, my dear one.

  8. Roxana:
    Ahora recuerdo un tremendo poema de Mattawa:"Ecos & Elixir", que en sus primeros versos dice:
    "Los taxistas de El Cairo me hablan en ingles.
    Respondo, y dicen tu árabe es bueno.
    ¿Cuanto hace que estás con nosotros? - Toda la vida
    digo, pero nunca me creen"

    El poema "The Wound", es bellísimo, casi como tus fotografías.

    1. gracias Tristan, por el poema y por tus palabras, estoy muy feliz de que hayas venido a decirme esto...

  9. I sense the very same intensity, passion, fervor and strangeness of the Penitente, a practice still very much alive in the American Southwest. It is also interesting that this post follows the previous subject.

    1. ah you are so right, Stickup, i hadn't thought of the connection with the previous post, but now it is apparent, maybe it was all in my subconscious somehow...

  10. Or maybe...Free us from the wounds of the palm....

  11. :: smiling :: you can be very funny!

  12. I love your work and I particularly like your portraits and this series.