A cri de cœur or fully imagined poem on the myth and history of Jerusalem/Al-Quds from the author revered as the greatest living Arabic poet At the age of eighty-six, Adonis, an Arabic poet with Syrian origins, a critic, an essayist, and a devoted secularist, has come out of retirement to pen an extended, innovative poem on Jerusalem/Al-Quds. It is a hymn to a troubled city embattled by the conflicting demands of Jews, Christians, and Muslims. Adonis’s city, as a coveted land, ought to suggest the universal love of humanity; as a land of tragedy, a place of contending history and beliefs, and a locus of bitterness, conflict, hatred, rivalry, and blood. Wrapping multiple voices, historical references, and political viewpoints within his ecstatic lyricism, Adonis has created a provocative work of unique beauty and profound wisdom, beautifully rendered in English by award-winning poet Khaled Mattawa.
About the Author
Adonis, born Ali Ahmad Sa’id, is a Syrian poet. He has been a leading figure in the modernist movement in Arabic poetry since the mid-twentieth century. He lives in France. Khaled Mattawa is professor of English and Creative Writing at the University of Michigan. He has received a MacArthur grant among many other awards for his writings and translations.