Spring 2010 • Vol. XXXII No. 2 Poetry |

Excerpts from the Body’s Sura

i. They will have silver circling their wrists. They will have curves and details, and limber muscles. Their loose hair will be drenched on brief evenings with the psalm of joy. ii. The moons of desire tremble on the young men's bodies. Then they wilt and lose their light. And where the wings of night birds flutter, a song pricks the reeds of their souls from ten different directions. iii. Body, stop your endless wrestling with the wind, with iron, and all sordid beasts. iv. They will have bees rising from the armpits' nectar. They'll have the breasts' roundness and the fingers' light touch. They will not dream of other things while here. They will read verses from their book and toss their heads back.

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Khaled Mattawa currently teaches in the graduate creative writing program at the University of Michigan. He is the author of four books of poetry and a critical study of the Palestinian poet Mahmoud Darwish. Mattawa has coedited two anthologies of Arab American literature and translated many volumes of contemporary Arabic poetry. His awards include the Academy of American Poets Fellowship Prize, the PEN Award for Poetry in Translation, and a MacArthur Fellowship. He is the current editor of Michigan Quarterly Review.

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Lampoon

By Amjad Nasser, translated by Khaled Mattawa

i. They will have silver circling their wrists. They will have curves and details, and limber muscles. Their loose hair will be drenched on brief evenings with the psalm of […]

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