Preserved In A Can Poem by Rosa Jamali

Preserved In A Can

Rating: 5.0

Preserved in a Can
(A Parody on War Poetry*)
A Poem by Rosa Jamali
Translated from original Persian into English by the Author

We have been sleeping inside the spinach leaves and the ground under me was solid, stony and rock-like
On the gulf, there was a manuscript that your body has been lost
Your hands were getting out of your skull
On the Persian Gulf, there is a piece of writing that says you have been lost forever!
And you as my reader, you know those leaves cannot be slashed by a scissor for so many years
My lips have been sewn to null
How long has it been?
A decade has passed since the war
One hundred years, a century, one thousand five hundred years!

'Sorry I've lost my watch on Iraqi soil
So do I have to run all this way in the speed of light to the land of Zion? ! '

Off the embankment
You and your second body had no hands
But your body was so stout and preserved the pieces
I couldn't fix your arms though
The reversed fingers are growing out of his skull,
What are they clutching to?
My face was just a masque and I was acting well
As if I was all those dead bodies, all the martyrs; the fifth, the sixth, the seventh, and the last one
Nonetheless I was racing in a rush all around that Arabian quagmire
My pieces were separated, preserved in a can
Transforming into the bits of light and wine!

We were high in the mountains,
I sewed spinach leaves to the celery, what shall I do? You say...
We were frostbiting in the cold but my finger tips were not burning anymore
There is a letter from your previous address arrived yesterday
And I had a nightmare that your number plate has been buried under the moat...

Now you are the name of this street and I'm not streetwise
I'm swerving, going backward, finding a parking space for my body
The path is dusty and I desperately need photochromic glasses
Your arms are chopped in pieces and your head has been covered in blood
I'm getting back now
I've washed and buried one thousand, six hundred and sixty-six martyrs
They were all anonymous!

We had been sleeping in spinach leaves
I had lost the headquarter
And I had no idea about the time or date
But I was still going and going on...

As if the martyr's mother is still waiting for a body
Is it possible to sew these leaves to something?
Never, …!

Though it's been ten years since we buried him
Like this unnamed Persian gulf!

*At time of Iran-Iraq war and in Post-revolutionary Iran where the poet grew up; poems written under the title of sacred defense were so passionate about death and euphemized dismembered parts of a corpse.

Jazib Kamalvi 23 May 2020

Such a nice poem, Rosa Jamali. You may like to read my poem, Love And Iust. Thank you.

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