Qabbani was revered by generations of Arabs for his sensual and romantic verse. His work was featured not only in his two dozen volumes of poetry and in regular contributions to the Arabic-language newspaper Al Hayat, but in lyrics sung by Lebanese and Syrian vocalists who helped popularize his work.
Through a lifetime of writing, Qabbani made women his main theme and inspiration. He earned a reputation for daring with the publication in 1954 of his first volume of verse, "Childhood of a Breast," whose erotic and romantic themes broke from the conservative traditions of Arab literature. The suicide of his sister, who was unwilling to marry a man she did not love, had a... more »
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Nizar Qabbani Poems
In The Summer
In the summer I stretch out on the shore And think of you Had I told the sea
Every Time I Kiss You
Every time I kiss you After a long separation I feel I am putting a hurried love letter
When a man is in love how can he use old words? Should a woman desiring her lover
Oh, My Love
Oh, my love If you were at the level of my madness, You would cast away your jewelry, Sell all your bracelets,
Light Is More Important Than The Lantern
Light is more important than the lantern, The poem more important than the notebook, And the kiss more important than the lips. My letters to you
My Lover Asks Me
My lover asks me: "What is the difference between me and the sky?" The difference, my love, Is that when you laugh,
I Have No Power
'I have no power to change you or explain your ways Never believe a man can change a woman Those men are pretenders
Letter From Under The Sea
If you are my friend... Help me...to leave you Or if you are my lover...
A Letter From A Stupid Woman
(A Letter to a Man) My dear Master, This is a letter from a stupid woman Has a stupid woman before me, written to you?
I wept until my tears were dry I prayed until the candles flickered I knelt until the floor creaked
The East receives my songs, some praise, some curse To each of them my gratitude I bear For I've avenged the blood of each slain woman and haven offered her who is in fear.
I do not resemble your other lovers, my lady should another give you a cloud I give you rain
I Conquer The World With Words
I conquer the world with words, conquer the mother tongue, verbs, nouns, syntax.
A Damascene Moon
Green Tunisia, I have come to you as a lover On my brow, a rose and a book For I am the Damascene whose profession is passion
(4 April 1928 - 28 May 2014)
(March 26, 1874 – January 29, 1963)
(10 December 1830 – 15 May 1886)
(26 April 1564 - 23 April 1616)
(12 July 1904 – 23 September 1973)
Edgar Allan Poe
(19 January 1809 - 7 October 1849)
(1 February 1902 – 22 May 1967)
(31 May 1819 - 26 March 1892)
(16 August 1920 – 9 March 1994)
In The Summer
In the summer
I stretch out on the shore
And think of you
Had I told the sea
What I felt for you,
It would have left its shores,
And followed me.
Translated by B. Frangieh And C. Brown
Submitted by Noele Aabye