Glimpses of Mohamed Saleh’s life

The latest collection of 19 poems titled La Shayaa Yadol (“Nothing Tells”) from the late poet Mohamed Saleh was only published after his death. With each poem only a few verses long, it was obvious that Saleh was bidding us farewell by offering fleeting glimpses of his life.

Saleh, who died at the age of 67, produced six collections of poems, starting with “Homeland of Burning Coal,” published in 1984 until his penultimate to “Like Black Crows” which was published in 2005. His latest contribution to the world of poetry, “Nothing Tells,” was published only after his death.

In his new collection, the poet pictures himself contemplating that tall, leafy grape tree which he had planted in his village many years ago. He recalls that indelible image of women carrying their sick children to the Awliyas’ tombs to implore their assistance. Then he recollects how as a ten year old he had to write poems for his elder brother who, on a whim, decided to become a singer.

Saleh continues to offer those quick glimpses while attempting to cling to those flashbacks so they may be the last his eyes behold before he departs from this world.

Book: La Shayaa Yadol (“Nothing Tells”)

Poet: Mohamed Saleh

Publisher: Kayan, Cairo, 2010

59 medium-size pages

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