The Sudanese most prominent translator al-Sir Khidir has recently published a book entitled "Modern Sudanese Poetry" containing a number of selected poems translated by him into English.
The following poem was written by poet Mohamed Abduhai titled Departure On Fatima's Voice:
Lovely one and stop those who are leaving
For their homeland.
The Nile and my kinsmen's boat have slept
Who would speak of my yearning to Fatima's village?
The palanquins were halted in their tracks by a tune...
A tune lost in the sand,
And no caravan - chanter sang.
Who would tell Fatima, the -pagan,
The marginal news:
This is a time of distortion and fear
And the metallic tedium which burst out from
The heart, the voice and the memory.
O sacred rites of singing,
Let us depart, dancing to beat
Of the melodious tune of the charming singer,
On whose serene strings sleep the downtrodden,
The drunkards - the singers
Fatima, the villager, sleeps through the dream
Of the warrior,
In lightening, thunder and the swirling rain.
The charming singer
Thrust her voice upon the Sahara
And on the rocks - in the marked street
In the tranquilized pause and the straying footsteps
Stop, lovely one,
And stop those who are leaving
For the boudoir of Fatima, the Bedouin.
Late is her wedding
The departees... ..
Slept on the sand.
The palanquins were halted in their tracks with dismay.
The necklace, unstrung,
And the backs of horses, broken.
O return, joyful.
Naked, dance Fatima, the African,
To the beats and sang, restrained.
Now is the moment for Fatima, the Bedouin to dance
The courtyard is open for all the women,
And my heart is enamored by singing.
I adore you, Fatima.
And the colours of your astonishment change,
Or your sad tears
Drown the hum of passion,
Or your ardent rhythm is spent,
As the whore singer's voice spills over,
And this brazen singer
Seeks to seduce me and saying:
"For you I stopped the music"
But my memory
Is assailed from all sides
O you who are leaving
For your motherland, the Nile
My kinsmen's boats have slept.
Stop and spread out
The scarf of Fatima the Bedouin
On the sand
The robes of Fatima, the African
On the rising sun.
The sun is approaching.
So stand up,
O the downtrodden, stand up
And carry me away on her voice