Thursday, May 19, 2022 | Shawwal 17, 1443 H
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Victim of Ravenous Nights

A Window into Contemporary Omani Literature

The following are translation of poems by the Omani poet Hilal Al Hajri (1968-) from his first collection titled: “Night Is Mine”, (Muscat: 2006):

At Some Moment

On the peak of Jabal Al Akhdhar


The world burns out

And the secret in your eyes shines

When heaven comes close to earth

Everything becomes


To pluck a moon

Or sleep with a star.


The waitress

To whom I said one night,

"I crave to cry

In your bosom"

Has left the city.

And the star

That seduced me at dusk

Has died out now

At dawn.


A redundant body

With no mission

Wings of imagination

Take him

Round an orgy of delight

Where human surplus

Prevails even over emptiness.

How can I break up this blockade?

The mind fire I can hardly quench


Victim of ravenous nights.

O roofs, come closer to earth

O corners, embrace me without pity

O joggling cup,

Feed on from my wounded soul!

Ode to an Unknown Phoenician Warrior

O sand lady

Good evening,

An evening of jelly-like time

An evening of time torn in Balqees' tower

(She thinks it a sea)

An evening of myths... nothing but myths...

From them we start love, with them we end the kisses

An evening of time that will never come,

An evening

Large as treasons in One Thousand Nights,

Far as the distance

Between a prophet who lights

A match to burn his village,

And another who drowns it in decay,

Large as the neigh it lucked,

The drums of the dervishes

In the village of salt and gossip

Large as the commandments

Torn apart

By the child's hand

Shivering in the sky

Large as the languages in my mouth

Nothing there but letters of crying.


An evening of childhood,

O sand lady,

An evening of an epoch that's gone,

An evening of time that will never come.

What is between the cradle of breathing in and out?

A wide expanse of loss bargains me

My steeds are bargained

The questions stretch out

And the paths to death are virgin.

No prophet has yet stepped on the square of my mind.

There're the tribes grilling

Mornings in the palm of sun,

Awaiting for the impossible knight.

In cradle was tranquility

In grave was tranquility

So where do we start our wishes?


All the caravans travel to the mazes

No footwear do I have but the rear of questions.


An evening of childhood

O sand lady

An evening of an epoch that's gone

An evening of time that will never come.

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