A British publishing house has released a new English poetry collection by Husam al-Din Muhammad, a Syrian poet based in the UK.
The collection was launched during a virtual event on Zoom attended by a number of poets, writers, friends, and some fans of culture and poetry.
It features Syria in the introduction which highlights the situation there and the Arab world based on the enigma of Oedipe, who stood on the door of Thebes city facing a monster that offered him two options: to resolve a puzzle or to die.
In his book, Husam tries to resolve the Syrian enigma that has turned into a universal problem and made Syrians an example of human beings trying to escape death.
The collection includes 16 poems and the book's back cover features three reviews of the collection.
Syrian critic Khaldoun Al Shamaa described the collection as "a unique narrative with a twist of the writer's biography that urges people to read it. It impressively showcases some complicated materials that explore an amazing concept full of power and ingenuity."
For her part, Iraqi poet and writer Haifa Zangana said: "The poet is trying, through the many characters in his poems to catch the dreams of love and hope of those who are trying to survive the dark times."
Iraqi poet and writer Jabbar Yassin saw that Muhammad "looks with the stranger's consciousness at the far place and moment which vanished forever," noting that, unlike the ancient Arab poets, he stood facing the disasters of the present to reconcile himself…He uses words as a consolation for the soul."
The cover features a painting by Syrian artist and poet Ismail Al Rifai.
An Arabic translation of the collection will be released soon by Dar Al Mutawassit.
Husam al-Din Muhammad is a writer, poet, and journalist born in Damascus, in 1960. He currently lives and works in London.