They tortured the corpse
until dawn broke down
and the rooster rose up in protest.
They thrust nails in its flesh.
They whipped it with electric cables.
They dangled it from the ceiling fan.
When the torturers were finally tired
and took a break,
the corpse moved its little finger,
opened its wounded eyes,
and muttered something.
Was it asking for water?
Did it perhaps ask for bread?
Was it cursing them or asking for more?
What did the corpse want?
Translated by Sinan Antoon
From Sargon Bulus, Azma ukhra li-kalb al-qabila (Another Bone for the Tribe`s Dog) (Beirut/Baghdad: Dar al-Jamal, 2008)