Sunday, May 10, 2009

Anwar Ridhwan : Three Poems

(Translated by Muhammad Haji Salleh,2004. Burnished Gold: An Anthology of Contemporary Malaysian Poetry. Kuala Lumpur : Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka).

Anwar Ridhwan

Water does not only make the flower bloom
it also sharpens its thorns

while picking them
why don't you just take
its blossoms?

the admirer does not pick flowers
she looks at strung flowers

as your fingers hurt
blame not the rain
for roses and thorns are twins.

Anwar Ridhwan
Before White When White

Before being White we were burnt soot
when White we wandered

firstly to search for the beloved
child, wife, husband, both parents
who shall we first meet

we met all, it was a crowd
for it finally aged Adam

those whom we fought on earth
are now family

we are merry, also needing
quiet from the great family
that I now call moths
come, my love
let's find quiet under their wings
while they cruise gently in the great bomantara
between the stars
of the universe of the White government.

Anwar Ridhwan

At the bend of the river time sped
oars are adrift

the floor of my boat rushed, rumbling
the forest's canopy sung, thundering

suddenly appearing at the bow
You whom I used to know.