I let alphabets cling to me
as I climb the thread of language
between myself and the world.
Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi is one of the leading African poets writing in Arabic today. Famous in his native Sudan, the vivid imagery of his searing, lyric poems create the world afresh in their yearning for transcendence.
In 2005 Saddiq’s poems were first translated into English by the Poetry Translation Centre for their first World Poets’ Tour. Since then he has received a rapturous reception from UK audiences.
In 2010 a party was organised for him at London's Petrie Museum of Egyptian Archaeology which holds a significant collection of ancient Sudanese artefacts. As a result of the success of this event (and earlier visits to the Petrie in 2005 and 2006), he was able to work in the Petrie Museum as their poet in residence during the summer of 2012. This led to a new book of poems, He Tells Tales of Meroe: Poems for the Petrie Museum (Poetry Translation Centre/Petrie Museum, 2015), which was shortlisted for the Ted Hughes Award.
Born in Omdurman Khartoum in 1969, Saddiq has published four volumes of poetry, including his Collected Poems in 2010. From 2006 he was the cultural editor of Al-Sudani newspaper until he was forced into exile in 2012. He was granted asylum in the UK and now lives in London.
'Connoisseurs of classical love poetry should seek out A Monkey at the Window, Sarah Maguire and Mark Ford’s selection from Al-Saddiq Al-Raddi, a Sudanese poet living in exile in London.' - Jeremy Noel-Tod, The Sunday Times (Poetry Books of the Year)
Arabic-English dual language edition
Co-published with the Poetry Translation Centre
The Poetry Translation Centre translates, publishes and tours contemporary poets from Africa, Asia and Latin America. Through innovative collaborations between international poets and English-language poets, the PTC aims to introduce new audiences to poetry from around the world and celebrate the diverse communities who live in the UK.