Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Geographies I

For R.J.

I went there for a third time. I wanted to be recognized, essentially recognized, yet not known. I had seen that smile, or, at least I had imagined, in that land, where yellow was immediately turned into sparkling white. The name of the land is only a fraction of a name, a fleeting presence, a moment without mediation, by other moments; standing by itself, suspended. The smile had a name, had a voice, and a physical shape, without yet occupying a body. On the contours, I detected the familiarity, the warmth, the distortion. I wasn't interested in the food, or in the companion even; I simply stared into the signs, hoping that I would recognize myself in the eyelid. That I would recognize who I had been, who I had become in the expectation, I wanted to witness again the delicate lines of the transformation; how I had broken myself to become visible only to the one eye of the world. What had I done with the rest of my body? That I could no longer remember. Why was I still afraid? Afraid of the letter that would never arrive? That I didn't know. Each time, I became more familiar, and hence, less and less visible. Perhaps an object, something incomprehensibly sensory, yet unreachable, undecipherable, a fraction of empty space. So void I became, like a postcard, sent to the wrong address, muted.

What is it that vanished? Was it the void or the space circling around it with dots? Every hour of the day, in my mind, I wrote a different letter, a letter that would never be sent, a letter whose signs would disappear as it is being read. Or, like that letter, that meant to lure someone to Istanbul, cut into shreds by the hand and thrown at a hotel bin in Adliya, as the words pierced the limbs of the writer himself as if burning coals were entering his exhausted body. A body of exhaustion, that is how he began to understand the spaces of the world. Spaces are not places, cities, desired destinations or even moments of love; the space is only delimited only by the contours of the absence around it, by what one would have wanted to have in them, by the traces of disappearance. I would like to look at the photographs of missing persons, wondering if I may find myself too. The clear gladness of water, that was the initial sign on the map, on the map that contained the names and the instructions, and at the end, of a circular journey, there were bodies, traces of food, a walk to the lake, no more than twenty minutes, it could have been the ocean. No one knows. The instructions were lost on a certain night, at a hotel in Juffair, when everything went dark, he fell into a pit, on a  26th of November. All the pages turned blank, the next day.

Hundreds of pages they were, hundreds of days they had been. It was like a summer day. No one asked any questions anymore, someone traveled to another city, somebody else traveled to another country. On the last day, he saw the water, at day time, and the island didn't disappear, or become smaller, but for a moment it was infinitely big, many times larger than the entire world. All the orders of happiness and unhappiness were small enough to fit in it, and it never altogether faded from view. I still see it, sometimes, when I dream that I am awake, and that we still kept our secrets, like children, who could laugh at their own mistakes and repeat them time and again. That dream, albeit so small, seems now like that point, where the universe began. Have you ever been at the beginning of things? Maybe that's why he wanted to be free. Free from the names, free from the embodiment, free from the enclosure, free to tiptoe around the delicate lines that one day were to form the bodies. The firm bodies. An anchor in the ocean of uncertainties. Aren't maps more enclaves of enclosure and limitation than merely descriptive topologies of what is possible? Parallel lines, horizontal lines, cages, cages in search of birds. How can you lose what you never had? The temptation of impossibility runs larger than any of the edges of mis-having. Have everything. Have without limits. Have without giving anything... That is not everything.

I must go everywhere. Into the most difficult places. Into places where being afraid is the only human possibility available. I must go at a going without having, a place that circumvents its own space by collapsing unto itself, imploding, subverting the order of the maps, coloring the highest places first and in a crescendo, descending into the fertile valleys, imagining that they are like a skyline, growing in blotches and then bleeding from the top, into the deeper womb of the highest peaks. I was in a place like this, it was without regrets, no one had questioned the motifs then, and that would have been easy, easy to say we're sorry, wonderful to say we regret it. But there's no sorry and no regret from a position of having no choice. He wanted to live. He would live at any price. Unlike the poet, whose survival skills were tuned only in a dialectical relationship with death. He understood so late what the clear gladness of water meant: No aesthetics is possible from a position in which the orders of reality are far more advanced than those of the imaginary. In the absence of aesthetics, the confrontation is brutal, and one has to be prepared, too, for mercilessness. This is what the peak was: A free fall. He stares into an old photograph. Have you ever seen the beginning of all things? It was right there, in front of him, a fleeting moment, it contained everything. That was his belief, that he could never stare into the photograph for long; he wanted to capture the moment and make it not last, but reenact itself, on and on. It was his endless faith in fragility, as the readable sign of ever lasting strength. That is what it was. Only a quick stare. That's all what he was permitted to keep.

I must go everywhere, again.

أنت، إذا، الشعور الذي لم أبحث عنه، إذا. أنت، إذا، ملايين المجرات التي
لم تخلق بعد، إذا. لأني أنا، ملايين الذرات،إذا، التي لم تبكي رحيلك، إذا


Anonymous said...

حزين جدا وجدا، جميلة جدا آري

Anonymous said...

It's sad but so beautiful Ari. you've been missed :(

Anonymous said...

So gut wrenchingly sad,iv missed your beautiful words :(

Anonymous said...

لماذا قمت بحذف التعليقات العامة على الفيس بوك هذا الصباح قبل أن أتمكن من رؤيتها؟ اشتقت لك كثيرا، آري.

Anonymous said...

وآمل آري سوف تعرف صوت شخص يحبك

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