Translation of 'This Distant Light' by the Palestinian poet Walid Khazindar

This is my modern English translation of a poem by the Palestinian poet Walid Khazindar. 

This Distant Light
by Walid Khazindar
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Bitterly cold,
winter clings to the naked trees.
If only you would free
the bright sparrows
from your fingertips
and unleash a smile— that shy, tentative smile—
from the imprisoned anguish I see.

Sing! Can we not sing
as if we were warm, hand-in-hand,
sheltered by shade from a sweltering sun?

Mirza Ghalib translations

These are modern English translations of Urdu poems by Mirza Ghalib. 

Near Sainthood
by Mirza Ghalib
translation by Kanu V. Prajapati and Michael R. Burch

On the subject of mystic philosophy, Ghalib,
your words might have struck us as deeply profound ...
Hell, we might have pronounced you a saint,
if only we hadn't found
you drunk
as a skunk!

***

Ghazal
by Mirza Ghalib
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Euripides Translations

These are my modern English translations of epigrams by Euripides. 

Love distills the eyes’ desires, love bewitches the heart with its grace.—Euripides, translation by Michael R. Burch

Fools call wisdom foolishness.—Euripides, translation by Michael R. Burch

One true friend is worth ten thousand kin.—Euripides, translation by Michael R. Burch

Not to speak one’s mind is slavery.—Euripides, translation by Michael R. Burch

I would rather die standing than kneel, a slave.—Euripides, translation by Michael R. Burch

Leonardo da Vinci “Paragone of Poetry and Painting” Translation

These are my modern English translations of epigrams and poems by Leonardo da Vinci. I suspect da Vinci's “Paragone of Poetry and Painting” may have been aimed like a dart at his greatest rival, Michelangelo!

Excerpts from “Paragone of Poetry and Painting” and Other Writings
by Leonardo da Vinci, circa 1500
loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Eihei Dogen Kigen translations

These are modern English translations of haiku and other poems by Eihei Dogen Kigen, translated by Michael R. Burch. Eihei Dogen Kigen (1200-1253) was a Japanese Buddhist monk, priest, poet and philosopher who founded the Soto school of Zen. 

This world?
Moonlit dew
flicked from a crane’s bill.
—Eihei Dogen Kigen (1200-1253), loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Takaha Shugyo haiku translations

These are my modern English translations of haiku and tanka by Takaha Shugyo.

Oh, fallen camellias,
if I were you,
I'd leap into the torrent!
—Takaha Shugyo, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Wild geese pass
leaving the emptiness of heaven
revealed ...
—Takaha Shugyo, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

Inside the cracked shell
of a walnut:
one empty room.
—Takaha Shugyo, loose translation/interpretation by Michael R. Burch

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