Eminem and Hatima

7 May 2009 at 5:28 AM | Posted in News | Leave a comment

It seems that ordinary readers (i.e., non-literary critics) enjoy multilingual poetry. Here’s a reaction to a blog entry on macaronic verse:

“Hey, I never knew where the term ‘macaronic’ came from! Thanks! The zajal and an earlier strophic verse-form called the muwashshaha were erudite Arabic compositions based on a demotic refrain, sometimes in Romance vernacular or colloquial Arabic with Romance words mixed in. They probably emerged from poetic dueling, in which poets would be challenged to compose extemporaneously upon a set theme and melody. Kind of like Eminem in ‘Six [sic] Mile.’ My favorite is a poem of ibn Hatima of Almeria, with the refrain, ‘My language is good Arabic (fasih) but my beloved’s is foreign (‘ajam)!’ Can someone translate?”

Maybe, it’s just me that isn’t quite into Eminem, but that someone can be into him and into multilingual poetry makes me feel that there is hope for humanity!


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