March 10, 2009

Finally -- Lone, Lost, Weeping, Wailing, Dead, Willows...


I am a clumsy woman...I do things backwards...I am not terribly sophisticated and am not terribly smart either...

I missed Women's international day...Instead I posted on the 8th of March, something celebrating, in my own way, the birth of the Prophet.

How clumsy can one get ? I could have devoted a whole post to Women instead...

But what is done cannot be undone as Shakespeare said...so let me tell you what the Prophet said about the Feminine...

Right before he died, he urged his companions to protect women and to treat them with kindness...

Following in the footsteps of the Divine Scriptures, he reminded his companions that Widows and Orphans were the responsibility of the Ummah...

For those of you who do not know Arabic, Ummah is a derivative of Umm and Umm means Mother. Rahman and Raheem, the two attributes of the Divine, Compassionate and Merciful are derived from the root word...Rahama or Rahm...meaning respectively -- to have Compassion/Mercy (rahama) or Womb (rahm)

Al-Rahman - Al-Raheem is the cornerstone of the Ummah. The Compassionate and the Merciful is the central symbolic stone of this Ummah. Of this Mother...

The Mother that gives birth...The Great Mother who is chosen to bear and give birth to more men and women and by correlation to Ideas, to Culture, to Civilization, to Science, to Knowledge, to Life...

It does take a Mother...a Woman in the symbolic and literal sense....

She is the repository of all Knowledge, of all Striving, of all Effort, of all Seeds that fight to survive and bud...into something else...

The Prophet also said to the effect -- do not kill your children out of fear of want, for the Great One will provide.

In the Jahaliyah, in the age of Ignorance, girls were killed, sacrificed at some altar, of some Deity...

Killing is not only physical. You can kill someone psychologically, morally, sexually, spiritually...there are as many levels of killing as there are levels of Being...You can destroy someone on so many levels...You have that power...

A power derived from armies, weapons, ideologies, and even those exact same religions that, on the surface, urge you to do it differently...

But the human kind and the human mind are capable of such perversions...

Tell me something...How much perversity are you capable of ?

How far would you allow them to tug you along ? How far deep can you drown in the obscurity ? How much can you go along pretending...How far can you stretch your own perversity...How far can your soul take it before exploding in indignation ?

Are there any limits to your perversity ? Any limits to your crimes ? Any limits to your indifference ? Any limits to your lies ? Any limits to your ignorance ? Any limits to your stupidity ? Any limits at all ?

I search for limits...I am obsessed with frontiers, borders and limits...

I see them surrounding me...

They ask me for an ID card, for a passport, they search for my name, they take my finger prints, they scan my eyes, they take pictures of my profile...they measure and weigh me...they limit me...give me a size and a number...they give me an identity...they call me by my name...

And beyond those frontiers , beyond those borders...where are the limits...? What identity will be conferred to me ? Upon me as a woman ?

Will anyone recognize me ? Will I have a name ? A number ? Am I anyone ? Where am I ? Who am I ? I envy those who are across the borders...the frontiers...at least they have a name...

I, in my own country, on my own turf, am forgotten...

My rahm, my womb gave birth to so many...where are they now ? No one recognizes me anymore...Who am I ?

I feel an itch, my body is expanding again...across frontiers...I am losing my mind...My body is stretching...my organs are stretching, am the whole earth...I have no frontiers, no borders, no limits...who is it that visits me at night ? Who is that takes me by force ramming through check points and security guards ?

Where is my security ?

Where is that voice that told me I was the womb of all Compassion ?

Where are they now ?

I see their turbans, I see their prayer mats, I see their suitcases full of dollars.... But I do not see them...


There is no them...I have been sold, bought, trafficked...Passed around like some toy, like some object, like some piece of meat...and they are sharing me with an orgiastic appetite...I can hear their laughter resonating from the glasses of whiskey...I hear them while my body dances to forget...somewhere far away, far away from me....

Finally the fantasy has come true...finally I am subdued...finally they can either pity or denigrate me... finally I am in line...finally am a beggar, finally am desperate, finally I fit into what they always secretly wanted me to be...
Finally am powerless, finally I have no frontiers, finally I have no father, no brother, no husband, no son...finally I am alone...finally am all theirs...finally am broken just like they want me to be...finally they can throw crumbs my way and feel proud...so proud.

Do you see that Arab walking down the street, ever so swiftly like some shadow ? We raped her...

Do you see that Sunni Rafidha, Nawasib hiding in the alley way ? We tortured her...

Do you see that corpse floating, dreaming of rose petals ? We murdered her..

Do you see her in Amman, Damascus, or some other capital ? We exiled her...

Do you see her filthy black, stinking of garbage and covered in dust ? We stripped her...

Do you see her ?

I dance in the nightclubs...I push my arms against the slimy walls and pretend am Ishtar, the goddess...alcohol goes to my head, I am prized...Is my ass big enough for the prize ?

I am too young, all I want is to finish my schooling. They will not renew my residency...He is 35 years older than me. He has 2 other wives. I am his slave...I am a slave for a residency permit.

I am a widow. I had a home and a family...I have no one left. I sit on the pavement, I occasionally beg...but am even too tired for that...

I am a university graduate. I gave my body to someone I do not love. He promised to deliver me from this Hell and am still waiting...

I am a rape victim, I can no longer look into any one's eyes...I am ashamed of my body...I have lost my voice. No one hears me anyways...

I am sold and trafficked. My price keeps changing...One day am with sultans, one day with soldiers and one day with militia men...someone adopt me please.

I am a regular housewife, I have no right to work and my husband beats me...I have nowhere else to go...can anyone help me ?

I am a street girl...there are half a million of us roaming the streets...I will grow up to be....be what ? I don't really know....just be....

I am an orphaned girl...

I am a female detainee on no charges...

I am a corpse with no name. I was mutilated and murdered for being a woman...

An Iraqi Woman...

I am...

I....

....

.



Painting : Iraqi artist, Ahmad Al-Karkhee.