These Calm Things

Mohammed Dib

Did you have to leave?
The children play outside.
They don't stop yelling.

How many girls,
how many boys!

And the people neither eye
nor face to face going up
going down, going up again.

How many people,
how many unhappy fools!

And one staying. One,
that the things looked at,
very calm, in a circle.

How unwise a guy,
how quiet a guy is he!

One, like them. One
in whom a poignant envy
burns to stay calm.

How legless,
how lousy a guy is he!

Devouring isolation,
banana-split lapped up for two.
Remember, Jessa.

Last updated June 30, 2015