Saturday, 4 June 2011

My Angry Cat - Nizar Qabbani (1961)





You're repeating yourself
for the twentieth time.
Is there another man in my life?
Yes. Yes. What did you think?
Even graveyards have visitors.
There are, my dear sir,
a lot of men out there,
and no garden is ever devoid of birds.
You're just an experience I had,
and here I am,
tired and bored from this experience,
out from under your spell.
I'm cured of all
my weakness and gullibility.
Niceties do, after all, always end.
You love me!
There you go again,
dredging up all that ancient history.
And since when did you ever show
the slightest interest in me
outside the contour of my hips?
Where does this sudden gush of love come from?
I was never anything more
than a forsaken chair
among your expensive furniture,
a garden you chose to raze
without shame or repentance.
Why are you staring at my breasts
as if you owned them?
And why do you weep as if you
stood before a lost kingdom?
Your glorious kingdom, dear sir,
has just crumbled.
There. I've settled my score
in an instant.
You tell me now
who's losing the game.
I opened myself to you
like the Garden of Eden,
gave you all the sweet fruit
and green grass you desired.
Today I offer you
neither heaven nor hell.
This is what you get
for acting the ungrateful.
You faithless. If you'd only treated me
like a human being - just once -
this other man wouldn't exist.


 قطــــــتي الغضبى

للمرة العشرين ..... كررتها
"هل في حياتي رجل اخر ؟؟"
نعم ..نعم .. فهل تصورتني
مقبرة ليس لها زائر

مااكثر الرجال ..ياسيدي
لاروضة إلا لها طائر

تجربة كانت .. وها أنني
نجوت من سحرك ياساحر
شفيت من ضعفي ومن طيبتي
فطيبة النفس لها اخر
تحبني !! ليتك ماقلتها
هذا حديث غابر..غابر
منذ متى ؟ اصبحت تهتم بي
منذ متى هذا الهواى الغامر ؟
هل كنت إلا مقعدا مهملا
يضمه اثاثك الفاخر؟
مزرعة نهبت خيراتها
لاذمة تنهي ولا زاجر
ترنو الى مفاتني مثلما
يرنو الى امواله التاجر
يا أيها الباكي على ملكه
لقد تداعى ملكك الزاهر
حسابي القديم .. صفيته
بلحظة . فمن بنا الخاسر ؟
كانت لك الجنات مفتوحة
ثمارها .. وعشبها الناضر
واليوم .. لا نار ولا جنة
هذا جزاء الكفر ياكافر

لو كنت انسانا معي مرة
 ماكان هذا الرجل الاخر

Translation by Nayef al-Kalali

7 comments:

  1. I really like the imagery and figurative language that the author uses. The metaphors of being compared to a chair or graveyard are very powerful. The reader can actually feel what the author is conveying.

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  2. The man was so caught up in his wealth that he even saw you as an object. You say you were no more than a "forsaken chair" to him. Dump him, gurl.

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  3. I'm really confused as to how this poem at all relates to cats. This woman is making excuses for why she cheated when she simply could have left him. He treats her badly and so she treats him badly. The situation has no winner. She should have left him if he was such a pig.

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  4. But alas human nature, and matters of the heart, are not that simple....!

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  5. I really enjoyed how the poem incorporated so much imagery. As a reader I felt very engaged and was able to feel what the author was conveying. However, I don't quite understand how the cat fits into the poem. I understand the woman is explaining her reasons for cheating and how she finds justification for treating someone badly because he treated her badly. I like how she compared herself to a graveyard; as a reader you could feel her sorrow and loneliness..."even graveyards have visitors", but also her profound anger. Great poem!

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  6. This song helped me with a breakup. I used to be called his cat - and I found this poem by accident actually. I am now an angry cat.

    Also, I think I can understand how this pertains to cats. Cat can be a word used for your lover, like a term of endearment. In English, cat isn't a word of endearment. But in Arabic, cat can be a cute name you call a child, or a beloved.

    Nizar is my favorite poet - I saw this and it slowly healed me. <3

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  7. i read you poems. i am really touched. the way you described the situation, it's too amazing.

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