O Gardener of the Soul

For today, a little poem the Moroccon poet Abdellatif Laâbi sent out around the end of the year — & I have just found a moment to translate:

O gardener of the soul
for the new year have you foreseen
a plot of human earth
where still to plant a few dreams?
Have you picked the grains
brightened up the tools
consulted the flight of birds
gazed into the stars, the faces
the pebbles and the waves?
Has love spoken to you these days
in its foreign language?
Have you lit another candle
to wound night in its pride?
Speak up
if you’re still here
At least tell me
what did you eat and what did you drink?

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