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Issue 42

December 2011 – Winter

Welcome to the 2011 volume of The Ghazal Page. We expect a total of six issues this year: the four quarterly issues, published on the equinoxes and solstices, and two special issues based on challenges.

Submissions of ghazals or related prose (reviews, criticism, theory, etc) are welcome. Text-only format is much prefered.

Bitter Orange

by Ibn Hamdees

Wake to your morning draught; let coffee’s dark wine
Linger in the air with the lute’s pure music.

Look closely at the bitter orange sliced on this plate
I present to you, bringing your cheek near to mine.

What wonder — there blaze between us
Embers that glow with the fire of Paradise.

— after Ibn Hamdees, 12th century Sicilian poet

David Jalajel has loosely translated the Arabic original, resulting more in an inspired variation.

Ibn Hamdees (1055 – 1133) was a Sicilian Arab poet. He was born in Noto, near Syracuse. He left Sicily in 1078/79, probably due to the encroachment of the Normans. He finally settled in Seville, where he enjoyed the patronage of the prince Al Mu`tamid, who was also a poet. After the prince’s death, Ibn Hamdees moved from one Mediterranean country to another until his death in Majorca in 1133. His works include over 6,000 verses, many of them devoted to his lost Sicily.

Tree Riesener Ghazal: Contrarieties
Joel Neubauer Circumference
Fergus Carty 2 poems
Robert Gifford Elision
Bill Batcher Community
Robert Godwin Entranced
W. M. Rivera A Proposal
Patricia Thomas The Wife’s Ghazal
David Jalajel Two Ekphrastic ghazals:
Bachelors Bared Bride. Here.
Lucy – on the Nile with Flowers

About larrygates

Web developer of Ghazal Page. Sometime pseudonymous ghazalkar.