The Beduin —

Edvard Søderberg: Poems of the Street

The beduin pulls his tentpole
out of the sand and sharpens his sword;
then he travels through the desert
under the night stars’ glow.

He’s bored by the whispers of palm trees,
of the homely dishes the sight –
but out there he eyed the eagle
tighten its wings for flight.

Out there sound the songs,
and the sky is ablaze.
Then he travels ahead to the distant,
sun-red fairytale place.

And the caravan of the traders,
which rocks ahead, slow and late,
through the desert, stops recognizing 
the whitened bones of his fate.

I too am like the beduin
without a place to remain;
I love the unexplored paths
and the night-time’s loneliness.

I follow neither people nor flag,
I suffer no mark or shield;
never did I fight in ranks
and never I fought afield.

The salesman strokes behind counters
his mammon and drinks his wine
and judges with gentile gazes
the poorer beduin. –

He uses his chalk and his pen,
the poor and pitiful man,
who never for one hour longed
for the sun-red fairy-land…