Category Archives: Anthology

My collected writings and those of family members.

‘We Were Limpid, So We Were Not Turbid’

A verse of classical Arabic can be tightly packed. Besides immersion in grammar, what’s most useful to this student of the language is a highly Congruent (1) translation. It amounts to what’s called a “trot,” and is the least likely … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

On Saying and Meaningness

I painted it all tried to paint my thoughts / And caught so little / The world still grows it grows relentlessly / And yet there is always less of it(From “The Old Painter on a Walk” by Adam Zagajewski, … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

‘O Thou There, Who Barkest at the Bènū ‘s Sīd’

Below is jargon improvised for gauging how a translation navigates its source text. Note how the verbiage is strewn with hedging adverbials, conceding a priori that the labels are judgments, which by definition are subjective, privative, compromised, blinkered and fallible. … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

When Is a Viper Just a Snake?

I share my neck of the world with rattlesnakes, water moccasins, copperheads, coral snakes (red-on-yellow, kill a fellow) and cottonmouths. I can’t tell a moccasin from a cottonmouth — they frequent water, and I don’t. When I see one of … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology, Commentary | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Translating Winds and Currents

(Continued from https://ethicaldative.com/2022/10/08/assaying-a-translation-strange-dawn/ ) An interesting feature of a translation is how “faithful” it is to the source text. Faithfulness (a slippery term) tends to be a matter of degree, to fluctuate as the translation goes forward. The translator, sailing … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Assaying a Translation: ‘Strange Dawn’

I shove off in the El Toro dinghy of my dreams to navigate Gilgamesh’s Snake (1), sailing on a sea of Arabic towards a far shore, which is the poem’s end. Ghareeb Iskander’s poem has 5 parts: I. SongII. The … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , , | 1 Comment

Romancing ‘Gilgamesh’s Snake’

The transliterations bracketed below are mine. In them, tā’ marbūṭa is ẗ, and I show the lām of the article as assimilated to a following solar letter. For example: [‘ayyuhā-s-sayyidu] instead of [‘ayyuhā-l-sayyidu]. My character set, contrived to avoid digraphs, … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Fixing to Start Something With ‘Gilgamesh’s Snake’

Ghareeb Iskander is an Iraqi writer who lives in London. HIs book of poems in Arabic, “Gilgamesh’s Snake and Other Poems,” was published by Syracuse University Press in 2016. The English translations are the work of Scottish poet John Glenday … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Versicles & Dangleberries

Wrath of ThronesThee 8TH of Henrys did decreebad wyves &&& Thomases must meet their Heav’nly Fodder sharpishly,ahead of shedjewel, toote sweet.***** Thee Archfellowe of Hi KirkFor proper fayth Thee others beeBeelzebubbish,don’t ye see?**** Saint Peete Monarkee & Papacee a-sittin’ in … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged | 2 Comments

‘Your Cheatin’ Heart Will Tell on You’

… Is the best song ever written. It makes a start, goes somewhere you can follow, and has a wind-up. Hank Williams tells a story every man jack of us can relate to. This song and a few beers will … Continue reading

Posted in Anthology | Tagged , , | Leave a comment