Only when parted -Poem

I don’t know how it started,
Warm, nice, and sweet.
With smiles and laughs, bombarded,
And when we both will meet
We’ll laugh at how it ended
Slowly, swiftly, delayed
For endings have a way
To lead you so astray
That you’ll remember how it started but only when you’ve parted.  -S.S

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Start – Poem.

In search for passion,
In search for self,
In search for idea,
In search for heart,
In search for caution,
In search for care,
In search for end,
In search for start.

Start what?
What could make me so sure as to begin?
What makes me sure that even then, I’ll win?
Winning isn’t everything, of that I’m sure you know,
If losing isn’t an option how on earth will you let go?

There’s a fire, and I know it.
Or I wouldn’t be a poet,
There’s a light that I must reach,
But should I learn or should I teach?

So many things I want to find,
Until then, no peace of mind.
So many chances I should catch,
Life is nothing but a match.

Exciting and amusing and other feelings I can’t recall,

Disappointing and depressing, everyone is bound to fall.

So many grand things you won’t know that’ll make you feel so small.

So many small things, delicate and tiny that’ll make you feel like a wall.

You move on with your life quickly,
Forgetting what still lies behind,
Wanting to know what’s waiting out there,
And since then, no peace of mind.

Sophia.

A fact we’re used to rejecting.

   There are some facts that you reject, and there are some that you simply get used to. But I got used to rejecting the fact that I feel inferior in my own country just because I’m a girl. I’m actually writing a novel, and it includes this issue.
   In Egypt, a man’s words and actions are unquestionnable, he does what he wants, when he wants, regardless to weather it is right or wrong. A women, on the other hand, would be judged for every little thing that she does. I mean seriously why am I being bothered in the street for example when I’m wearing normal clothes? “It’s provocative” they’d tell me. Not actually addressing the point that my body and what I dp with it is none of their business, but why do they harrass people with really baggy clothes then? It actually became a game for them. Those people give Egypt’s men a bad name. (We also tend to generalise a lot, if a person is in a group and is X, then the rest of the group automatically is X. )

I did some research, and found out that almost all of us feel the same. I asked many girls what they’d like to do that they don’t because they’d feel unsafe, or uncomfortable, or just out of place. This is what I got:
– I want to be able to do sport in the street.
– I want to be able to sit in an Ahwa.*
– I want to be able to ride a bus for example, or a microbus.
– I want to wear what I want without being judged, harrassed, or feeling unsafe.

These are the simplest requests, without going into any complicated matter, but people like this make some of the “normal” guys feel responsible for our safety while out with them, basically in a group, they’re usually the bodyguards. Not too fun, is it?
I also know that the people who are responsible for this aren’t going to read this, and you’d think it’s ridiculous, why am I blogging then? Take a bigger step. But no, I’m writing this to every girl who reads this, do not be afraid to speak up when someone bothers you. Turn around and ask them if that was really necessary, of course don’t do that if you are in a dark street with no people around, we don’t want anyone to get killed here, but when you can, just do!
When a policeman harrasses you, ask them how you are supposed to trust him with your safety with this kind of behavior? I’m writting this for every guy that has been misjudged because of our unfair generalization, I’m writing this for every person who has ever felt like they were always in second place because it’s just how it is. It’s not how it should be, and we will fight.

Sophia.

(*Ahwa: a local coffee shop where normally only men would go)

Rowayat: A New Literary Magazine for Egypt (in English)

ArabLit

The website of Rowayata new Egyptian literary journal just launched, and the print magazine isn’t far behind. Founder Sherine ElBanhawy says the magazine aims to embrace Egypt’s hybrid writer, particularly those who write in English, from Waguih Ghali to Ahdaf Soueif to Hedy Habra to the future:

logoThere are a number of Arabic literary magazines in Egypt, ElBanhawy says:  Akhbar Eladab, Elkhan Elthaqafeya, A7lamena Eladabeya, Gallery68, Ibda3, Sotour, Adab wa Naqd, and more. But there isn’t a serious literary magazine in English, although, she says, “Egypt has always been the base of a hybridity of writers that express themselves in many languages other than Arabic.”

Why now? 

ElBanhawy said that, for the past three years, the country has been on an emotional roller coaster, “and it’s been thrilling, depressing, exciting, nerve-wracking.” Now it’s time to work, she said, “we have to build,” and “whoever is good at something…

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مكانش ده بقى حالنا -Poetry.

مكانش ده بقى حالنا.
لو كنا ادينا اهتمام اكثر شوية للحاجات الصغيرة الي محدش غيرنا كان شايفها.
لو كنا طنشنا كلام الناس و عشنا حياتنا زي ما احنا عايزينها.
لو كنا حاولنا اكثر و ضحينا اكثر و التضحيات كنا فاهمينها.
لو كنا دورنا على الخلل او المشكلة او الحاجة الي كنا حاسينها
مش مضبوطة و مش ماشية و مش سيبانا نفتكر الذكريات الي عشناها
لو كنا بصينا لقدام مش نعد كام خطوة مشيناها
لو كنا شايفين اننا بنجرح بعض و الاحزان انت كنت تهواها
لو كنت فكرت في لحظات حبنا بس مع ذلك قررت تنساها.

صوفيا.