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Ahmed Rashid Thani at the Poetry Evening in Abu Dhabi,
14 December 2011, waiting to read his poetry
A terrible phone call came from my colleague in Dubai, Shaker Noori, on Monday 20 February, giving us the shocking news that our dear friend the poet Ahmed Rashid Thani had collapsed and died. I had just been with him in Abu Dhabi in mid-December at the poetry evening for Emirati poets that Banipal put on with NYU-Abu Dhabi and the Emirates Foundation.
Suddenly gone. . . . . All our deep condolences to his family and friends.
We were very pleased to have published translations of his poems in Banipals 38 and 42, and I realise there is one, "The Waves", from Banipal 38, already online. Here is an excerpt, and the link to the rest.
I mine souls
and light the ashes of books,
spurred on by the pangs of loss
When the orphans come
out of the waves
I spread my eye’s gaze
. . .
Click here to read it all now.
Ahmed Rashid Thani was active on the cultural scene, working as a cultural journalist for Arab newspapers, writing poetry and plays, and taking part in literary festivals in the UAE and the Arab world. His first collection, in vernacular Arabic, established him as a modernist in both style and subject matter.
For more information about Ahmed Rashid Thani, click here.