Friday, May 24, 2013

Yahia Lababidi

If Yahia Lababidi were in charge of a country, I would want to live there.
~Naomi Shihab Nye

Today I am sharing two poems by Egyptian-American poet Yahia Lababidi. Thank you, Yahia, for giving me permission! The first is a poem-video of Cairo:

The Art of Storm-riding
by Yahia Lababidi

I could not decipher the living riddle of my body
put it to sleep when it hungered, and overfed it
when time came to dream

I nearly choked on the forked tongue of my spirit
between the real and the ideal, rejecting the one
and rejected by the other

I still have not mastered that art of storm-riding
without ears to apprehend howling winds
or eyes for rolling waves

Always the weather catches me unawares, baffled
by maps, compass, stars and the entire apparatus
of bearings or warning signals

Clutching at driftwood, eyes screwed shut, I tremble
hoping the unhinged night will pass and I remember
how once I shielded my flame.


Fanciful creators by Yahia Lababidi
Dawning by Yahia Lababidi
A tweet poem by Yahia Lababidi
Yahia's SoundCloud stream

One last quote from Yahia:
Intuition: generous deposits made to our account by an unknown benefactor.


The deadline to register for the 2013 Summer Poem Swap is June 1st.

Jama has the Poetry Friday round-up!


Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

Wow. Just wow. Poetry can be a powerful drug, don't you think? I especially loved CAIRO, though after watching it once, I had to play it again, this time with my eyes averted so I could really listen to that spectacular imagery. Thanks so much for introducing me to this outstanding poet.

Yahia said...

What a gift this is, Tabatha! Thank you, for your very generous introduction, and I hope that your readers find something here of sustenance.

Your fine cultural blog is a testimony to 'the opposite of indifference'.

May we never cease to Care!

With Gratitude,


Robyn Hood Black said...

Many thanks for sharing more fine work from Yahia Lababidi, Tabatha - and thanks to him, too! I agree - your blog always lives up to its name!

"Dawning" especially speaks to me today - thank you.

Tara @ A Teaching Life said...

The first lines of each stanza were so powerful...especially the very first line of the poem. I am still thinking about that one....

jama said...

What thought-provoking, powerful poems. I enjoy the architecture of his poetry, how it reveals intimate thought processes so different from my own.

Bridget Magee said...

Amazingly powerful post, Tabatha! Thank you for introducing us to Yahia's poetry. =)

Yahia said...

Hello, Again

Just popping in to say Thank You, to All, for your gracious attentions & heartwarming words of appreciation!

If you like, you're welcome to join me on Twitter:


Renee LaTulippe said...

Splendid poems! I love "Cairo," made even more stunning by that wonderful video. Thank you for introducing me to this poet!

Mary Lee said...

I'll echo Renee's thanks for the introduction to this poet!

"I still have not mastered that art of storm-riding" = favorite line to savor and ponder.

Intuition quote = copied and saved!