Learn More

Nissim Ezekiel

(16 December 1924 - 9 January 2004 / Mumbai / India)

The Hill


This normative hill
like all others
is transparently accessible,
out there
and in the mind,
not to be missed
except in peril of one's life.

Do not muse on it
from a distance:
it's not remote
for the view only,
it's for the sport
of climbing.

What the hill demands
is a man
with forces flowering
as from the crevices
of rocks and rough surfaces
wild flowers
force themselves towards the sun
and burn
for a moment.

How often must I
say to myself
what I say to others:
trust your nerves—
in conversation or in bed
the rhythm comes.

And once you begin
hang on for life.
What is survival?
What is existence?
I am not talking about
poetry. I am
talking about
perishing
outrageously
and calling it
activity.
I say: be done with it.
I say:
you've got to love that hill.

Be wrathful, be impatient
that you are not
on the hill. Do not forgive
yourself or other,
though charity
is all very well.
Do not rest
in irony or acceptance.
Man should not laugh
when he is dying.
In decent death
you flow into another kind of time
which is the hill
you always thought you knew.

Submitted: Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Edited: Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Do you like this poem?
1 person liked.
0 person did not like.

Read this poem in other languages

This poem has not been translated into any other language yet.

I would like to translate this poem »

word flags

What do you think this poem is about?

Comments about this poem (The Hill by Nissim Ezekiel )

Enter the verification code :

There is no comment submitted by members..

Trending Poets

Trending Poems

  1. The Road Not Taken, Robert Frost
  2. If You Forget Me, Pablo Neruda
  3. A Child's Christmas in Wales, Dylan Thomas
  4. Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening, Robert Frost
  5. No Man Is An Island, John Donne
  6. Annabel Lee, Edgar Allan Poe
  7. If, Rudyard Kipling
  8. Still I Rise, Maya Angelou
  9. A Poison Tree, William Blake
  10. Alone And Drinking Under The Moon, Li Po

Poem of the Day

poet Li Po

Amongst the flowers I
am alone with my pot of wine
drinking by myself; then lifting
my cup I asked the moon
to drink with me, its reflection
and mine in the wine cup, just
...... Read complete »

   

Member Poem

poet Marvin Brato Sr

New Poems

  1. Perfect Union, Anu Shraddha
  2. Dafur crisis, Lubinda Lubinda
  3. Boy vs girl, Mark Heathcote
  4. remplaçable, Lubinda Lubinda
  5. Human Nature, Merton Lee
  6. Those Moments Of Weakness لحظات الضعف هذه, MOHAMMAD SKATI
  7. Money (Cedi), Ghana Green Poetry Foundation
  8. Off the Rez, Smoky Hoss
  9. As an emigrant كمهاجر, MOHAMMAD SKATI
  10. Two Little Boats, Ghana Green Poetry Foundation
[Hata Bildir]