Fady Joudah & Mahmoud Darwish

This Is Forgetfulness

This is forgetfulness around you: billboards
awakening the past, urging remembrance. Reining in
the speeding time at traffic lights,
and closing up the squares /

A marble statue is forgetfulness. A statute
staring at you: Stand up as I do to look like me.
And place roses on my feet /

A hackneyed song is forgetfulness. A song
chasing the housewife in celebration of the happy
occasion, in the bed and in the VCR room,
and in her vacant salon, and in her kitchen /

And a monument is forgetfulness. Monuments
on the roads shaped like bronze trees
adorned with eulogies and eagles /

And a museum empty of tomorrow, cold,
narrating the seasons already chosen from the start
This is forgetfulness: that you remember the past
and not remember tomorrow in the story