May 1, 2010

Tied....


Someone asked me today - what ties you so much to Iraq ?
What a silly question - I thought to myself.... I did not reply...
So he repeated it again - why the silence ? What is it that ties you so much ?

I saw my garden blooming with Jasmin flowers, spreading their scent in the whole neighborhood,  I saw the palm trees where I would recline underneath their merciful shade, I smelled the wet earth where I'd leave my naked footprints, I heard my mother shouting from the kitchen and the smell of food dragging me in...I saw my grandmother's smile as she was preparing tea, I heard my aunts fight over suitors, I felt the evening breeze caress my face, I saw the stars covering me in the chilly mornings, I heard the grocer greet me and offering me free oranges, I saw the souks and the warmth of the teasing and laughter, I smelled my grandfather's attic and his books, I saw Um Abbas carrying fresh cream at the crack of dawn, I saw my first love throwing my first love letter over the garden wall....

 I replied - the earth, the sky, the people...

So he said - this is not an answer...this is too vague, so what is it that ties you ?

And I answered - Love.


Painting: Iraqi female artist, Betool Fekaiki.