Friday, April 6, 2012

A Film of Nathalie Handal's poem "Biznagas", from "Poet in Andalucia"

Nathalie Handal's new book, Poet in Andalucia, looks to Federico Garcia Lorca's work Poet in New York, and seeks to recreate Lorca's "journey in reverse." According to Publishers Weekly, "Arabic, Spanish, Ladino Catalan, and fragments of other languages are woven together as the poems muse over borders between where one voice or language ends and another begins."

You can get a sense for this in the beautiful film by Rana Kazkaz, based on Nathalie's poem "Biznagas". The poem features Handal, along with Zayn Khalaf and Mary Sidor, and music by Kevin MacLeod. And you can read the English translation below.
(If you have difficulty viewing the full video below it can also be seen here.)


To belong
even if you’ve kept the hours
in your closet—
it takes years

to forget a person
who merely looked up at you—
it takes years

to understand why
while you walk
the leaves dictate
how your heart
will beat—
it takes years

it takes years
to hold the wind
in your mouth
have it accommodate what it can’t
a history
the clash of two moons
the slopes after heavy rain

and then the biznagas
remind you—
it takes years
to come back
from the direction
that divides you

No comments: