Loving and leaving Andalusian blue skies. A Ghazal poem for Al Andaluz, land of light

Church and plaza bajo in the village of Valdelarco in the Sierra Aracena

I have lost track of time with the wonders of spring back in Spain. Lots of time spent walking, talking, working the land, making cheese, yoga and Tai Chi. There has been little time for writing as I rush to get an irrigation system working before my return to family and wedding bells for my older daughter.

  I was introduced to ghazals and the poet Ghalib from my sojourns in India and Pakistan. That was some years ago now and I remember the time when all the Pakistani newspapers on the front page honoured a well loved poet and throngs of people came out to mourn the loss of this important poet. A ghazal is to be heard, sung and responded to immediately by an audience. It is often about love, loss, longing for an earthly delight or the sacred.

 Now I live in Andalucia, famed for its light and clear blue skies but also its history of many conquests and settlers: Roman, Visigoth, Islamic, Sephardic Jews, Christian and many others. All with songs and poetry of loving this land of light! And for many the sorrow of being forced to leave.

This is an attempt of writing a ghazal for the Dverse poetry form challenge. Notes on the Ghazal form traditional and contemporary can be found at Dverse.

 

 

 

 

Ghazal for Al Andaluz

 

Andalusian sky, land of light, with bright songs of deep blue.

On leaving I wonder how long will I long  for my return to you?

 

Remains of roman towns remind us of our constant defeat by time.

Wild wolves that roamed far extinct but all we do is long for you.

 

Passion tempered by conquest built on stones from the past.

Sevilla, Granada, fortresses that fight for me to stay with you.


Night brown hues touch the flesh of delight. What will tear us apart?

Defend this land of light, for so long as I can be here with you.


Poems for paradise, gardens to die in, tall palms shade intense light.

Rare richness of water, fountains for life, we long to return to you.


Foliage to ferment in, fronds to fan breezes, scents to seduce,

Water to soothe the smooth skinned sadness of life without you.


Calls from the minaret fade in the falling of the soft glow of light.

Ojala, obrigada, al andaluz, may we not be long away from you.

 

What dreams, what failures slip without sense from our sight.

Beauty of blue, land of  sharp light, we must not betray you.


Inshallah, with God’s gift we will return to your light.

Dark is the earth we till as we gaze right into the blue to see you.

 

Arbutus Unedo berries.

The associations came to me on a bus travelling from Aracena, our town in the mountains, to Sevilla, city of beautiful gardens! These were then put into couplets and the first two lines chosen to repeat in some way. In the last couplet there is reference to my first name Georgina which has connections with the earth and farming, a tiller of the soil  and my second name Jane, gift of God! And ‘right’ of course.

 

I always feel a sense of loss when leaving and wonder about when we will return, Inshallah, God Willing we keep healthy and young at heart and can ‘rage against the dying of the light’ so we can enjoy more time in our own wild woodland in Andalusia, land of light.

winter trees by the ivy perimeter wall.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I am posting late but will do my best to read more ghazals on the Dverse Mr Linky links.

 

47 thoughts on “Loving and leaving Andalusian blue skies. A Ghazal poem for Al Andaluz, land of light”

  1. So wonderful to be reading this as I sit…guess where!!!…classroom in the old Earl Marshal school..grey clouds..drizzle…deviants arriving any minute now !!! Booked Cropredy ..will be in fueld 8 with Treebeard band.. and Chloe xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Oh dear, am in grey London with stress of planning application for our street! Great to know you can be in Field 8. Perhaps talk this evening re meeting up before you set off on festivals.

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  2. At 2.30 am? At first I thought this was the Ghazal:
    I have lost track of time with the wonders of spring back in Spain.
    Lots of time spent walking, talking, working the land, making cheese, yoga and Tai Chi.
    There has been little time for writing as I rush to get an irrigation system working
    Before my return to family and wedding bells for my older daughter.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. This is lovely! You paint such a beautiful picture of the place and your longing to be there.
    One day I’ll get down there. One of my sister’s is going to live there (Alcala) already half-moved. And it’s where our dog comes from too 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I love your poem. Your bit of history at the beginning made the poem much more interesting. I liked this line: “Passion tempered by conquest built on stones from the past.” You live in a beautiful part of the
    world!

    Liked by 2 people

  5. In every way poetic, The words so carefully chosen make a melody in every couplet. The imagery takes you to place, affect your heart, becomes part of the reader as he/she reads it. This is truly a work of art. Kudos! Exceptionally well done.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks, Gay because I wrote images first but then read over the form again and tried to keep to it. Always hard but I love the longing that’s often in ghazals. Love your inspiring prompt and glad I managed it as very busy when changing country! There’s a good variety on Mr linky too and these help.

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  6. Dear Georgie, your blog post is a delightful event of illumination and love that I very much enjoyed, and hereby honour. As for the Ghazal: now I have read your first (or nth) draft, I can’t wait for the worked-up passionate version that I sense we all need you to present to that clear blue light 🙏 With love… Russell ☘️🐝

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi Russell, sorry I missed this. We have been busy and with no Internet in Marple. Still soaking up the blessed rain but the sun shone for the wedding day. Am trying to write a ghazal for the wet summer I have spent here in UK. Don’t think it will sizzle!

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  7. Georgina, a beautiful post! It’s fascinating to learn about the ghazal form and yours is pure magic, a hymn almost and full of emotion. I love how you’ve intertwined references to your names in the last couplet. Wishing you many blissful years in your beloved Andalusia! 😀🌺

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you, Annika. Missing it now but it’s 37 degrees there and rainy grey again here in north of UK. And no time to write much either! I think my creativity flows more in Spain and my political being just gets disturbed here!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Georgina, I can identify with the creative spirit being disturbed in the U.K. … it was heavenly to leave it all behind when I went to Jersey! Here’s to your writing flowing once again -I’ve learnt to not force it! X

        Liked by 2 people

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