Samih Masoud



Samih Masoud is a poet, writer, and researcher. He was born in Haifa, Palestine, in 1938 . He holds a Ph.D. degree in economics. Masoud is a Member of the Jordanian Writers Association and is the chairman of the Canadian Center for Middle Eastern Studies (CMESC) in Montréal. He has published a poetry collection in Arabic titled The Other Face of Days and another collection in English titled Haifa and other Poems, translated by Nizar Sartawi and published by Inner Child Press, as well as a novel titled Haifa…Burqa: A Search for Roots, which was translated by Bassam Abu- Ghazalah and published by Inner Child Press. In addition, he published  An Encyclopedia of Economics in two volumes and 16 other Books in the field of economics.

Samih Masoud’s poems are translated from the original Arabic into English by poet and translator Nizar Sartawi.



O Jerusalem
City of peace
Your little children
are crucified
morning and evening
and your women
die in their deep grief
O Jerusalem
Hymns are not heard
in your ancient house
Prayers are not allowed
in the prophets’ houses
Their bells are pigmented with blood
No water
No air
No fire
No light
The candles are turned off
The stars are stolen
in the threshing floors of heaven
O Jerusalem
No matter how long we suffer
and taste the pains of misery
we will always be here
growing like thorns in the eyes of strangers
we will remain inside you
growing olives
and chestnuts
tell the tales of our grandfathers
around the fire brazier
in the winter nights
sing ataba i
play the fiddle every evening
dance the dabkaii
as we please
and reap wheat
when July arrives.
We stay in you
in your hamlets
the symbols of pride
Within the twinkle of an eye
a thousand baby boys are born
a thousand baby girls
a thousand poems
and caravans
of martyrs and poets.

O Jerusalem
O icon of glory
in the heights of heaven


An Arab Woman

She has Arab
and lips
Her mouth is a red
Her pretty face
the stars.
On her fingers
henna dances.
On her braids
are anemone flowers
and other things
On the curve of her bosom
lights prance.

A belle
whose peer
I’ve never seen
A belle!


A Wanderer

The waves strike
against the remnants of my vessel
Alone I go
with the shadow of your face
by my side.
Along the paths
emerge the days of youth
in our land
our kin
our homes

and all that was ours
almonds and olives
and mijanai

Death Is Chasing Me

Death has been chasing me
for thirty years
drawing his blinds
detaining me in his hands
I listen to him
see his face with my own eyes
and sip from his glass
by little.
I go round him
I shake his hand
and in
the morning
he leaves me
disappears from my sight
and on the edge of a gasp

the moment goes on
digging out the ash of wounds
deep inside.



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