May Ziadeh in MainGate Magazine, a short biography with titles of speeches she gave—and her poetry

My poet friend Hagop Kazazian sent me this article in a magazine from recent times:

End Note Comments by me: —I wonder what she said about Columbus discovering America in her first speech at this college; I’d mention him myself often mostly metaphorically…

—I believe her brother mentioned here died as a young child and was her only baby brother and sibling as told in her poem, “Lacrymosa” and not at the later time of her parents and Gibran.

*

(The year should be b. 1886)

— Excerpt from a poetic letter included in May’s book, Fleurs de Reve (1911) translated by me—and then a verse poem that suggests to me that her pet canary might’ve been named Mimi and was a cheerful companion either way:

I was reading and I laughed; my canary has stopped singing to look at me with an air of thinking: “Why is my great friend laughing like that?” Poor little one – I educated him well already, but for the instruction ma fisch.

I’m talking about my canary, as if everyone knows him. So, I have to introduce him. My little canary is golden yellow with silver highlights and a long white tail; he has cute little pink paws, graceful little all-black eyes, blacker than ebony and jet, and a pink beak with a brown dot of beauty I call “Mimi”. Needless to say, I love and spoil him. He is very sweet and even more of a pixie. I speak to him and he answers me…in canary.

Poor little one, sometimes I pity him because he does not know freedom; but he seems very happy!

So much the better! !

—by Miss May Ziadeh

(1911)

*’ma fisch’—’There’s no more / Got nothing.’ (feesh, interjection, Egypt)

(a short excerpt from a verse poem May wrote with ‘characters;’ this last part stands on its own too):

And you, my beautiful friend

With the intoxicating smile?—

They call me ‘Mimi’

In the hours of delirium;

And they love my eyes

That point to the azure sky

And my voice….home-like,

….pure,

Spring gave me to May

And I was born

Then I was ordained,

Now I am a priest.

Now my name is….

And my light wings carry me

Away from the Convent

to the foreign lands.

I love to see this

Laughing Nile

chaste, azure,

and I bathe my eyelashes,

my heart,

my golden forehead.

written by Miss May Ziadeh (1911)

words from a poem she wrote.

—This canary was described as golden-yellow (I wonder if the golden forehead in above poem refers to him, kind of fantasy-like. He probably also danced, I’d imagine. 😊🎊 )

—I have always felt human at the core and female, so am not suggesting I was this bird as joked with in a fun / philosophical past poem I’d written on the blog, but in any situation, I find him a great character as part of her life (and he was an artist too, with his songs.)

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