Arabic translation help
November 2, 2012 10:03 AM   Subscribe

Arabic translation help. In 2008 I had the honor of attending the state funeral of Mahmoud Darwish. I have a poster from the event but have never translated the Arabic.

I'm almost certain the big, red letters are his name written formally, but I'm interested in what the rest says. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Sorry for the poor quality photos, my phone camera is sort of garbage.
posted by Baby_Balrog to Writing & Language (3 answers total)
Arabic student. corrections very much welcomed.

The first line is from a Darwish poem, transliterated: "ala hathihi ard, ma yastahuk alhiya."
I would translate that as "on this land, there's what life is worth."
or more fluently: "on this land, we have what makes life worth living."

The large bright red script is his name.

The small print in the corner says PLO.
posted by femmegrrr at 12:27 PM on November 2, 2012 [1 favorite]

Oh wow - thank you so much, I had no idea. That's incredible - it must be from the title of this poem.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 12:44 PM on November 2, 2012

I like this (somewhat loose) translation, by Michael Busch:


This land gives us
all that makes life worth living:
April's blushing advances,
the aroma of bread at dawn,
a woman’s haranguing of men,
the poetry of Aeschylus,
love’s trembling beginning,
moss on a stone
mothers dancing on a flute’s thread
and the invaders' fear of memories.

This land give us
all that makes life worth living:
September’s rustling end,
a woman leaving forty behind with her apricots,
an hour of sunlight in prison,
clouds reflecting swarms of insects,
a people’s applause for those who laugh at their erasure,
and the tyrant's fear of songs.

This land give us
all that makes life worth living:
Lady Earth, mother of all beginnings and endings,
She was called Palestine
and she is still called Palestine.
My Lady, because you are my Lady, I deserve life.
posted by femmegrrr at 1:10 PM on November 2, 2012 [3 favorites]

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