New collection of poetry from Mansur Rajih
Added: August 2008 to Network News
Min Brors Smerte (My Brother's Pain) is Mansur Rajih's third collection of poems published bi-lingually in Arabic and Norwegian. This collection brings us even closer to the Yemeni poet who was guest writer in Stavanger Norway, from 1998-2000.
Arrested only two days after his wedding day, the former president of the Yemeni Students' Union and member of The National Democratic Front spent 15 years in prison before he could resume his life with his wife - in Norway.
His poems give us insights into what kept him going all those years, how love and the desire for beauty and life made it possible to survive the pain, loss, and madness of torture and imprisonment. They also tell of a commitment to poetry, his homeland Yemen and most of all, to the woman who waited for him outside the prison.
Mansur Rajih has earlier talked about the conditions in prison:
"For the first nine months in jail, I was tortured. I was hung over an iron bar with my hands and feet tied. I was beaten with sticks and electrical cables - among other things. I was flogged, given electric shocks, and my sleep was systematically disturbed. My feet were in shackles for seven years."
His poems were smuggled out and printed in newspapers all over the Arab world. Today, Rajih and his family live in Stavanger, Norway.
'Min Brors Smerte' is published by Cappelen Damm.