“Muslims Are Dying and We Don’t Care”

The following poem was written in Arabic by Palestinian poet, Mahmud al-Muflih.
It was recorded as a song, I believe sung by Saudi singer Abu Abdel Malik, sometime in or before early 2001. The recording of the song is here; the audio in this link is better than the original recording. Some of the lines in the poem are omitted in the song version; I have translated all lines here, for the benefit of readers. Below is the full translation.

The Muslims are dying and we don’t care,
And we blather on about morals and values,

يموت المسلمون ولا نبالي ونهرف بالمكارم والخصال

And we live life in song and at play,
And we live life in gossip and chatter.

ونحيا العمر أوتاراً وقصفاً ونحيا العمر في قيل وقال

And we forget our brothers in God who have risen
With them, time departs upon the sands.

وننسى إخوة في الله ذرت بهم كف الزمان عـلى الرمال

The fangs of hunger rip them apart until
The elder nearly stumbles with his family;

تمزقهم نيوب الجوع حتى يكاد الشيخ يعثر بالعيال

They tighten their stomachs, full of emptiness,
And they share together the bread of ghosts.

يشدون البطون على خواء ويقسمون أرغفة الخيال

And the gusts of death strike them mercilessly,
And within their pupils is the bleeding of the nights.

وتضربهم رياح الموت هوجا وفي أحداقهم نزف الليالي

A procession into starvation — oh, my God!
And a condition sliding into debasement, what a condition!

قطارٌ للمجاعة يا إلهي وحال للمهالة أي حال

And they slept in the nude, without blankets;
And they walked in the nude, without sandals.

وناموا في العراء بلا غطاء وساروا في العراء بلا نعال

As if the deserts are speaking to them, so too,
The deserts slide with them into deserts of emptiness.

كأن البيد تلفظهم فتجري بهم بيد إلى بيد خوال

Their saliva drips, sighing sorrowfully, while their eyes
Fade upon the burning embers of the question.

يسيل لعابهم لهفا وتذوي عيونهم على جمر السـؤال

And would that the wounds were in the body, however;
The wounds of the soul are most murderous to men!

وليت جراحهم في الجسم لكن جراح النفس أقتل للرجال

They extend the cord, and would that I knew —
Are we to cut, or shall we cling to, the cord?

يمدون الحبال وليت شعري أنقطع أم سنمسك بالحبال؟

And before the hunger, they were bitten by dogs
Of the Franks, bloody as to the blades of their swords;

وقبل الجوع تنهشهم كلاب من الإفرنج دامية النصال

Be strong; verily, the days upon us are like the spotted snake,
And hunger twists the necks of men.

صلاب إنما الأيام رقط ويثني الجوع أعناق الرجال

They pay their taxes every day –
With what they possess, and the precious religion of God!

يؤدون الضريبة كل يوم بما ملكوا ودين الله غال

They came to the East, and perhaps the East repelled them,
When they rush forth to the East like a fox.

أتوا للشرق علَّ الشرق درء إذا بالشرق ينفر كالثعالي
(In the song version of this poem, the singer says: “When they come to the East, they do not care.”)

For why does every group support,
Their sons, except yourselves, the people of the crescent?

لماذا كل طائفة أغاثت بنيها غيركم أهل الهلال؟

We see that the crosses have gone forth and roused
The Jews, with medicines and with rewards;

ترى الصلبان قد نفرت وهبت يهود بالدواء وبالغلال

They were roused by some of the freely grazing livestock,
They were roused by some of the lost ants.

هبوهم بعض سائمة البراري هبوهم بعض سابلة النمال

You have forgotten “And fear for a day” that is heavy,
By which fire vibrates like the mountains.

نسيتم “واتقوا يوماً ثقيلاً” به النيران تقذف كالجبال

The bowels boil and sigh a heavy sigh,
As if its sparkling was the redness of camels;

تفور وتزفر الأحشاء زفرا كأن شرارها حمر الجمال

And we, the Muslims, sleep until
The night closes in to the sleep of confusion.

ونحن المسلمون ننام حتى يضيق الدهر بالنوم الخبال

You sit down, and the couches are proud,
And you agitate upon your precious beds;

جلستم والأرائك فاخرات وأوجفتم على الفرش الغوالي

And you place mirrors inside of your castles;
To pronounce the splendor and beauty;

ورصعتم قصوركم مرايا لتنطق بالبهاء وبالجمال

And the fragrance surged and the heavens glistened,
As if life was not to cease;

وماج العطر وائتلقت جنان كأن العمر ليس إلـى زوال!

We sleep upon the “Riyal”, and if we wake up,
Then indeed, the dawn is the opening of the “Riyal”.

ننام على “الريال” وإن صحونا فإن الفجر فاتحة الريال


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