Abdelmajid Benjelloun











Le lent cerceau de la respiration

The slow hoop of breath








-The moon is delivered this evening to the brook. I know not for what untemperamental immobility.

-To look at the moon, and give her fresh human looking, or rather a warm one.

-At the foot of the horizon, eve falls asleeps when the torch of the day dies.

-When gulls flock around the river, believe that the weather is not everywhere the same.

-Wind has many poplar forms in her sweep.

-I care not for the poet that throws words as a discus.

-The sky came to die between your hands like the last wave on the beach.

-Song or music interest me only if I mixed in their shadow all my gestures of grimacing happiness.

-I like paintings where beauty is arbitrary.

-Often I think the coming of the day is also the coming of the sense.

-That the light of the lamp resist to the storm is of little interest. But rather that it is a haven to the storm of light.

-The storm does not find its peace in calm, but in agitation.

-Poets also hold the magic of the mad verb.

-The stone that leaves us breathless by its immobility has in the mean time, all its time to do a tour of any soul.

-Silence is the permanent radio of any stone.

-The curves in stone are only the vague memories of its former dances.

-I am fascinated by the numbers that come after the comma in its immobility.

-For all the gold of the world, the stone never would be disturbed by its sense, nevertheless vertiginous, of stone.

-The rise and fall of breath is the same as the sea’s. Double use.

-Breathing man flies, if only a little. But, who is going to worry themselves over so little.

-Man watches his life pass by shaking the bells of his beath.

-Breath is like an accordion that plays music or that one touches.

-A trip? Just take up the flute.

-Departure is not necessarily a car attached to the rest of the train
-You purge your incapacity to create book by buying many of them.

-For certain men many of their errors are seen as success.

-Be wary of those so full of themselves. They can absorb fully no other.

-The superstitious should perhaps burn echoes in the sky.

-I could say, at least, that God made joy and pain so that we could love them both.

-Who is this believer that do not make with himself affectations of mystery concerning God.

-Is there not God in this miracle; the earth stands still at full throttle?

-Finally, we hate more than we love with this medium which is heart.

-With a woman, who do not desire a dream which has never functioned?

-With a woman erased by woman, I bit tenderly or I cut!

-Death is so made that with him we sooth all future pleasure. And, at a snap of the finger without a doubt.

-Sometimes truth devastates the world.

-When invaded by truth you will not know it.

-Truth often do not triumph unless it is not unannounced.

-Freedom is exercised only in conjunction of time and not in its structure.

-The perfect gaze is the view that things have of us.

-The visible has its mysteries and the invisible its own. Perhaps those of the visible are just more dense.

-My priority is not what is hidden in the night, but rather, what is hidden by the day.

-Loss of memory fores us to swallow awry, oh, how many years?

-In the best of cases, Memory will only become a very animated fair of loss.

-If time never returns on itself, it is only for the childish truths of poetry.

-The minute is a motor of 60r.p.s’s.

-Every dying instant transforms to silence. Nothing is lost, nothing created

-It is the meteors that are most quickly forgotten.









                      Translation: Robert Derr & AB








Abdelmajid Benjelloun (born in Fez, in 1944) is a Moroccan author, historian and poet.


He is a specialist in the history of North Morocco. He taught Public Law at the Casablanca University since 1983. He is a member of “la Maison de la poésie du Maroc” and professor in the history of international relations at the department of Law at the Mohammed V University in Rabat since 2002. Since 1999 he produces a French language program on Moroccan radio (RTM), Paroles d’esplanade. Benjelloun is also a painter.



Works on History

  • Approches du colonialisme espagnol et du mouvement nationaliste marocain (Khalifien. OKAD, Rabat, 1990)
  • le patriotisme marocain face au protectorat espagnol (Imp. El Maârif, Rabat, 1993
  • Fragments d’histoire du Rif oriental 1994
  • Pour une approche possible de l’histoire des institutions et des faits sociaux (Toubkal, 1997)
  • Le Nord du Maroc – l’Indépendance avant l’indépendance, Harmattan, 1997
  • Etudes d’histoire contemporaine du Maroc, Zaghouan, 2000



  • Etres et choses, le même silence, Saint-Germain-des-Prés, 1976
  • Qui tire sur les bretelles de ma respiration, ed. A die, 1991
  • Les sept cieux apparents du mot, Aphorismes poétiques, ed. E.m.a.j, 1993
  • La mort d’un proche ne se termine jamais, Casablanca, éd. Toubkal, 1998
  • Anthologie poétique, Flammes Vives, 2000
  • Mama, (auto-biographical novel) with an introduction by William Cliff, Paris, éd. du Rocher, coll. Anatolia, 2002
  • L’éternité ne penche que du côté de l’amour (William Blake and co, 2002)
  • Hassane l’andalou, ou l’étoile de la manquante était bien allumée, Rabat, éd. Racines, 2007


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