“The Marvelous Women” – Poem by Syrian-American Poet Mohja Kahf

Three Worlds One Vision

Queen Scheherazade - Persian Queen of the 1001 Nights

Legendary Persian Queen Scheherazade
Storyteller of One Thousand and One Nights
Photo Credit: Wikipedia/Painting by Sophie Anderson

My Poetry Corner March 2016 features the poem “The Marvelous Women” from the poetry collection, E-mails from Scheherazad, by Syrian-American poet and author Mohja Kahf. Born in Damascus, Syria, Kahf was four years old when she migrated with her parents to Utah in 1971. After obtaining their university degrees, her parents moved with her to Indiana. When she was in tenth grade, they relocated to New Jersey where she later obtained her doctorate in comparative literature at Rutgers University. Following her marriage, Kahf settled in Arkansas. An associate professor at the University of Arkansas, she teaches comparative literature and Middle Eastern Studies.

The opening stanza of “The Marvelous Women” caught my attention.

All women speak two languages:
the language of men
and the language of silent suffering.
Some women speak a third,

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  • ndtewarie  On 03/03/2016 at 4:11 pm

    This is my take on Women whom I think are super MARVELOUS:

    Sure God created man before woman. But then you always make a rough draft before the final masterpiece. Some men know that a light touch of the tongue, running from a woman’s toes to her ears, lingering in the softest way possible in various places in between, given often enough and sincerely enough, would add immeasurably to world peace. 


    What this world would be
    Without our women
    Don’t be stupid, dummy
    There would be no men
    For behind any good man
    There is a good woman

    There would be no world
    No country
    No flags to be unfurled
    So empty
    For women bring love into play for all
    This sometimes adds to man’s downfall

    What would the world be without fashion
    It would be a real mess
    Living in a bomb-shelter without ration
    Seeing a man in a dress
    It would be like a hive without bees
    Living in a desert without any oases

    Imagine a world without any bikini
    No G-string
    It would be so barren, no beauty
    A sad thing
    There would be no healthy beach
    And nothing for all men to reach

    No matter how man prays to the above
    He’d be left with a world so barren
    He would never be able to fall in love
    In a world so dull and foreign
    It wouldn’t be a world but a big joke
    Like drinking good rum without coke

    Men would be left facing the wall
    For men without women
    There wouldn’t be any Taj Mahal
    A cock without a hen
    It would be a sad, wretched world indeed
    And men would have no use for their seed

    And those commercials about hygiene and Secret
    For which men have no need
    They say their pH-balance don’t make them fret
    For which men take no heed
    But whether they use Massengill or wear panty-hose
    A rose by any other name is still a bleddy rose

    Men would surely go robust and bust
    The macho stereotype so sterile, so vain
    What would men do with all that lust
    Like going the other way in a one way lane
    That’s one sensation of which they would be deprived
    Which can’t be replaced no matter how they contrived

    Without women there’d be no heartbeat
    Men’s hearts would not last very long
    That would be the cause of men’s defeat
    There would be no love in their song
    Their world would be in monotone
    With poor men’s hormone all alone
    No night life without night-gals
    Boring, boring
    Men can’t have fun with their pals
    I’ll be snoring
    It’s women who maintain the balance and checks
    And men can’t live without this opposite sex

    Men would not need bedrooms
    No marriage no honeymoon
    No brides and no bride-grooms
    Like a song without a tune
    Then men may really learn a thing or two
    For without women they can’t find a clue

    Finally last but not least
    A man without a woman
    Will resort back to a beast
    And become a lesser man
    Sailing a sunken sail less ship without a mast
    In a planet just hit by a darn nuclear holocaust.

    Naraine Datt

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