‘Ludus’ and other poems by Roula-Maria Dib


or “A Thousand Poems”

You’ve written a thousand poems for me, my friend
–in your sapio-sudsy head…
in a world as real as this one,
where the ebb and flow of its soapy tides,
brush off and on that murky shore—
where all that can’t but is,
all that shouldn’t but will,
and all what’s hidden is naked
under that ruthless, roofless hut:
your eyes.

A thousand thought-fruits you’ve yielded
and ignored the tree in vain—
rejecting, pushing, plucking,
peeling, carving, craving,
…and ultimately, feasting
upon the forbidden.

While gnomes gnaw the inner walls
of your cerebral cave, engraving them
with cuneiform fantasies,
a thousand lyrics you pen,
and sing to that tune of what I recognize
to be my own voice.




With the night hushing irises away, lavenders call at the break of dawn,
waving purple corollas at the vigilant apertures.
From a provincial path, and beyond the hinterland of memory,
the healing embrace of a once-stranger dwelling in my heart
thaws the ice-patched knees of my soul.
Defrosted, touched by frankincensuality,
I wonder at the sight of embosoming blossoms
in aesthesis, inhaling the sweetness of the vision.
For a moment, I am alive, awake, and here,
in synchronicity with an eternal dawn.
This moment is now, tomorrow, and forever.

It is you again, visiting. As ever, knocking at my dream-doors,
gently caressing faith with lavandula petals.
This visit I shall return, willingly though unknowingly
when amethyst bushes lead the way once again.
Miraculously, like a butterfly to a tea-rose,
I find myself on that much-trodden path
through the heart of an ever-open door.
And I kneel, drunk with love, lavender, and light.


Iconic Existence

Keep her locked in an eternal smile, that loving gaze
you see in your mind’s mined cave deep within your Self,
or in the symbol on the solid wooden surface.
Let her sing, but from her nether-world into yours.

Silence the singing icon to keep it alive,
never conjure the image or form it
in this foggy existence.

You kill the icon when playing Pygmalion.

Strength lies in the centuries-old wood, solid-tude in solidity,
and purity in the hardness within its heart of gold.
There’s reality in imagination and more life in stillness,
One that is beyond the tangible and breathing.

Glossolelic, it speaks in echoes from the outback of non-air.
When gods materialize, they die.
Only to be born again…

Ludus and other poems © Roula-Maria Dib