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FATTENING WALL STREET — Mike Whitney reports on the rapid metamorphosis of new Fed Chair Janet Yallin into a lackey for the bankers, bond traders and brokers. The New Religious Wars Over the Environment: Joyce Nelson charts the looming confrontation between the Catholic Church and fundamentalists over climate change, extinction and GMOs; A People’s History of Mexican Constitutions: Andrew Smolski on the 200 year-long struggle of Mexico’s peasants, indigenous people and workers to secure legal rights and liberties; Spying on Black Writers: Ron Jacobs uncovers the FBI’s 50 year-long obsession with black poets, novelists and essayists; O Elephant! JoAnn Wypijewski on the grim history of circus elephants; PLUS: Jeffrey St. Clair on birds and climate change; Chris Floyd on the US as nuclear bully; Seth Sandronsky on Van Jones’s blind spot; Lee Ballinger on musicians and the State Department; and Kim Nicolini on the films of JC Chandor.
DigarguN hai jahaN taroN ki gardish tez hai Saqi

Ghazal

by MUHAMMAD IQBAL

Translation by M. Shahid Alam

The world changes utterly: the stars spin faster, O Saqi.
In every heart I hear the cry of surrender, O Saqi.

God’s journeymen have lost their arts, their certainty.
Whose artifice deceives them, who has this power, O Saqi.

Weak-willed, weak-hearted, dimly they mope about.
Deep is their need for that life-enhancing elixir, O Saqi.

The Muslim lacks the fire that can ignite his heart.
Why is the birth of spirit so hard to deliver, O Saqi.

There rises none like Rumi from the gardens of ‘Ajam.
Persia is the same, unchanged her sky and water, O Saqi.

Iqbal will not walk away from his fields laid waste.
A little dew and sweat will revive its power, O Saqi.

This dervish is privy to the rites, the rigors of power.
His words are rare, he ignites visions of splendor, O Saqi.


M. Shahid Alam is professor of economics at Northeastern University, and author of Challenging the New Orientalism: Dissenting Essays on America’s ‘War Against Islam’ (IPI Publications: 2007). He may be reached at alqalam02760@yahoo.com.

© M. Shahid Alam