Aphorisms on Art, Morality
to recognize the role we play in the creation of our enemy.
We are captive to what we
Art alters the artist
and, in time, recreates them in its own image.
All who are tormented by an Ideal must
learn to make an ally of failure.
Every Messiah is reluctant - at least,
True artists disturb the false
peace, also known as complacency.
Artists are heralds. In the way a dog barks to
announce imminent danger, so the artist registers an advancing stranger
lies on the other side of our gravest danger.
The inspiration for all our
is a rose of a thousand petals.
To travel light, leave the mind behind.
A cluttered mind makes for a
Mind is the handrail we clutch in the dark, for fear of
falling. Yet, it's precisely this that trips us - where the stairs diverge.
Poor rational mind, it would sooner
accept a believable lie than an incredible truth.
A poem should be flesh-warm, scented Spirit
two open eyes
when you're in the dark?
All languages are rough translations of our native tongue:
Yahia Lababidi is an
Egyptian-American thinker and poet, nominated for a Pushcart
Prize by World Literature Today magazine. He has been
featured on NPR, Al Jazeera, and in the Guardian, among
Lababidi's first book
SIGNPOSTS TO ELSEWHERE (Jane Street Press) was selected as a
2008 Book of the Year by The Independent (UK). "Signposts"
(available as an autographed paperback only from the
publishers) was followed by well-received collections of
literary and cultural essays, TRIAL BY INK: From Nietzsche
to Belly Dancing (available electronically from Common
Ground Publishing); poetry, FEVER DREAMS; and a series of
literary dialogues with Alex Stein, THE ARTIST AS MYSTIC:
Conversations with Yahia Lababidi. His latest is a new
collection of short poems, BARELY THERE (Wipf and Stock,
Lababidi's writing has been
translated into several languages, including: Arabic,
Hebrew, Slovak, Spanish, French, Italian, German, Dutch, and
Swedish. Otherwise, several video-poems based on his work,
have been shown at film festivals, worldwide, while Lababidi
has participated in international poetry festivals
throughout the USA, Eastern Europe and the Middle East.
He is the only contemporary
Arab writer featured in the encyclopedia: Geary's Guide to
the World's Great Aphorists, and the youngest poet included
in the best-selling US college textbook, Literature: an
Introduction to Reading and Writing (10th edition).
Lababidi was chosen as a Juror for the 2012 Neustadt
International Prize for Literature - a biennial award widely
considered to be the most prestigious international literary
prize after the Nobel Prize in Literature.
For more information, please,