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We thought we knew everything

Time goes by and you look back at who you were back then, back in the good old days. And it was us, a group of passionate, eager and ambitious Literature students. We studied literature, and we wanted to know everything about it. We wanted to explore the world through literature. We read, analysed and discussed. We argued. We lived in what we read. We devoted our days and nights, our vacations and our hectic times, to only be with our books. We were obsessed and sick.

We thought we knew everything. We thought we are taking over the world. Nothing stopped us from wanting to be the legislators of the world. In our worlds we were already kings, and gods.

We thought we knew everything. We thought that whatever Literature said to be true, was real for us. Literature was our religion. We prayed for poets and authors, they were our gods.

We didn’t want to live in peace, we wanted to live in poetry and remain wistful.

We thought we knew everything. And everyone around us was ignorant and unfortunate. We thought we were the lucky ones, the chosen ones. We are already in the quest of immortality, and ready to rule the world.

We were pure evil. And looking back at the good old days, we were purely naive.

 

 

This month I turned 28

October is a very important month for me: mainly because during this month, on the 13th, it’s my birthday.

I never had the opportunity to have a very special celebration for my birthday. I always celebrate my birthday with few friends and some members of my family. I don’t have many friends, I know many people, but no one loves me enough to organize a grand celebration for my birthday.

I spent my birthday at the Dead Sea with some members of my family, which for me was enough. The whole day was not organized for me specifically, I merely joined. But it was fine. We spent few hours at the Dead Sea and the rest were on the road. It was fine.

And I keep saying fine, because it wasn’t entirely amazing, but it wasn’t that bad. I could have spent my birthday in bed, logging in to Facebook every two seconds to check who wished me a Happy Birthday.

On the day of my birthday, I had the chance to see a relative of mine in the US, whom I visited ten years ago, in New York, on my birthday. “Ten years ago, today, you were waiting for us at the airport.” I was 18 years old. I was young, just finished high school, and had no idea how the world works. I had no idea what I was doing, and what I was aiming for in life. Not saying I do now, but I changed, a lot.

Now, I’m 28 years old. I’m older, a bit wiser, and more successful than I was 5 years ago, let alone 10 years ago. I have a good job, and I started studying for Masters degree in English literature. Some people would never think this is a great achievement, but for me, it definitely is. I try not to compare myself to other people around me, but sometimes I do. But mostly, I would compare myself and my lifestyle now to my lifestyle 5 years ago, and this is a success for me.

I’m 28, almost 30. I’m single, and mostly tired and depressed. But why does that have to negative? I don’t need a lot. I’m a very simple person, and when I lack anything, I try to find a way to obtain it. As long as I spend my days and night doing what I feel comfortable doing, why do I have to worry much?

Je suis contente.

Autumn Agony (unfinished)

– October 14, 2017

When it’s the beginning of the year
The autumn leaves turn into flames
And fall off.
No longer part of their home
Their grand, erect, warm and green home.
They loved their home.
Their home carried them
Protected them
And nourished them.
And now they’re part of this earth,
Wandering to find a shelter
A corner, or a cave to hide in.
Until spring rises again.

The autumn leaves might find a place.
While my agony will remain the same.
Spring will come after few months,
Where I’ll be the same
Though perhaps wearing something different.
I wake up every morning,
Look out the window
At the autumn leaves
Feel the autumn chill
smell the wet ground
breathe the agony that been haunting me.
And I think to myself,
Why does it feel the same?
Every single year?

It prepares me for wintertime.
For December and January.
For Christmas and New Year.
And I have to force myself to live through it,
And enjoy every little bit of it.
And then go home,
Lie on my bed,
Sleep through the rain,
Shut my tears,
And my eyes,
And fall asleep.
To wake up the next day.
And get up and live through it.
Live through every day…
Live through every moment of agony.
Until it leaves me for a bit.

 

My October

A poem I wrote three years ago.

Arwa

It happens early

or just earlier than  expected.

The first drops of rain

I learned to hate through the years.

But this is the time

my own month

to feel cheer.

It will take up another year

to bring back the heat

I had during summer time.

I wrote songs

of love and freedom

while looking at and feeling

that stormy warm sea.

The fall and its beginnings

brand new beginnings

of fear

anxiety

and excitement.

And that dreadful

wet

drops of rain…

symbolizing hope.

What hope?

the hope of return?

the hope of freedom?

They are  nothing but gentle,

frail and ill.

This is my month though

it will forever bring surprises.

Some of them joyous

others are dire.

October 4th, 2014

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When a door closes _

I’m not usually an optimistic person, I’m very pessimistic and I complain most of the time. But throughout the years I’ve learned that many things don’t work out as we plan, and yet we shouldn’t lose hope. When things don’t work out as we plan them, or imagine them, they don’t turn out necessarily better. In many situations we learn how to deal with them better, and we become better than before. It’s not always the case, but things aren’t exactly fair, and we don’t live in an idealistic world.

This year started our horribly and nicely at the same time. First of all, in January I moved to a new lovely apartment with my very good friend. Though not the most fabulous, I’m enjoying the current living and the apartment is extremely comfortable and nice. Living in our current apartment was a beautiful beginning for which I’m still excited.

The minute I moved to the new lovely apartment, I lost my job. For many reasons that had nothing to do with my work performance. When lost my dead-end job I became confused, concerned, disappointed, hopeless, and empty. I had no idea what to do and I was unfocused for some time. Most of my friends thought that losing the job was to my advantage, and that it’s time to look for a better job that will take me further in my life and it will be something I will pursue for the long-term.

 

During the unemployment period, I had the chance to work or be involved in few projects that had no real direction. Though my unemployment period was frustrating and depressing, I learned few things about myself, and I enjoyed the freedom to choose, and be able to be idle to try new things.

During that period I lived with the unknown, I had no idea what the next day would bring, and though it sounds adventurous, I was anxious. I wanted to have a focused life, and be part of something stable.

And I did. I found a stable job that is ten times better than my previous dead-end job. It’s a new beginning, and now after few months, I feel more focused, comfortable, stable, ambitious, challenged and mostly lucky. I’m lucky that when a door closed an entire gate opened up for me, to give me stability and a better future.

And that’s a lesson I like to teach: never lose hope; you’ll always find the golden gate that will open wildly to welcome you to a new world of opportunities. All you need is to work on yourself, and be yourself.

Hamburg – 2017

Last week I returned from my trip to Germany. I would like to share some of the pictures I took (and edited using Instagram).

I fell in love with the city. Though it wasn’t a cheap city (compared to the rest of Germany), it was very lovely. It wasn’t very crowded like the rest of the big cities all over the world, and it was filled with water (lakes and rivers), and lots of green (trees and others). It has more bridges than Amsterdam, London and Venice all together. It’s beautiful, and we were lucky the weather was warm (and summer-like) to let us enjoy every part of our tourist adventure.

On Happiness

I tend to overthink about happiness, and how happiness can affect my life. I look at happiness as the main ingredient of a healthy life, and I do aim to obtain a healthy life, and a good life.

I want to live my life to the fullest, I want to do and achieve everything I desire on my own way. I aim to be happy, I want to be happy, and I simply want to be content and love living my life.

I always struggled with finding my own happiness, until I realized that I can’t carry on like happiness should be a result or an aim. But the more I live, and over think about the subject and look around me, and reflect on my way of living, I came to realize that I need to heal myself from all of my agonies and live a happy life, while the rest will simply tag along.

Someone once told me that I should think of money as a mean, not an aim (or an end) to succeed in life. I should add that the same goes for happiness, it’s a mean to a successful life, not an end.

 

The following video is not new, but I only came across it today, and I would like to share it as a clarification of what I just said.

Random Persecution. Simply because I’m an Arab.

Over the last three years I decided that I cannot keep posting any political posts on Facebook, especially on Facebook, since it’s the most exposed medium and can subject myself to persecution, or in worst cases I can be arrested for state security offense.

Surely you can sense a tone of exaggeration, why should I be arrested for expressing my trivial political views? Thing is, in Israel, you cannot whatsoever express your opinion when it’s against the state of Israel, even if it is completely insignificant.

So here I am, posting nothing on Facebook that implies to anything political, Palestinian, Israeli, or even Arab.

 

But I have an Arabic name, and between brackets I decided to write my name in Arabic أروى simply because no one can spell it right in Arabic.

Out of no where, I received the following messages from someone I’ve never heard before. His name is a Jewish name, I decided to cover it, because it’s not my business to expose him to the internet, but after a month of contemplation I decided to share it on my blog here (not on Facebook, because I don’t want to be harassed further. Regardless of how funny it sounds).

See below: the messages are written in Hebrew, and I took the liberty of translating them quite literally.

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My first reaction, and comments are/were:
1- I’m not married, and I’m pretty sure I won’t get a husband that would rape me every day, and I don’t think I can ever become a terrorist.
2- I’m not a whore, I don’t get dicks. Especially not from terrorists.
3- I’m not stinky, I shower everyday. And where do I look for another nation? where?

I’m pretty sure I’m not the only one who receives out-of-no-where messages like these. And I don’t even feel like defending anyone regarding this. I think the chat log I shares says it all.

But I can say one thing, if an Arab were to be an asshole and send a message like this to any Jew, he will be sent straight to prison.

A blog post (somehow personal)

It’s been awhile since I last posted anything in this blog. I have been neglecting my writing, and this explains why my writing is poor.

I’ve been going through a lot in the past few months that I’m contemplating whether I should share them in my blog. I haven’t been doing well when it comes to sharing private experience in public.I feel that this makes me feel weak.

Today is the international day of women. It’s the day of people’s greetings, and the pretentious statuses on Facebook (I did share one status two years ago, just to provoke some people around me including my mother). Regardless, what do women do today? Really? Write about injustice and chauvinism? Shouldn’t we talk about that all the time?

It’s like people forget there’s misjustice against women (and many other people,nations, animals, etc), and on a specific day alone, they start pretending to fight.

Why do I feel that I need to get myself out of all these places? Maybe I do need to log off the social media and start a life without the internet. But in doing so, I will lose access and exposure to all kind of programs, job opportunities and important events. This might sound ridiculous, but without Facebook, I wouldn’t be able to join the Scrip writing workshop, and I won’t be able to find a job as a research assistant and a director assistant. Other than that, I wouldn’t mind logging off Facebook. And no, I don’t have many connections outside of the social media to keep me posted on any kind of social and cultural events in town.

On another personal matter, I’m completely lost. I find myself wandering through my thoughts, and then still wondering why I can’t be more stable in my life.

The past few months haven’t been treating me well. I moved to a new apartment to endure the life with a roommate, and within two days I lost my job. With all honesty I can say I was having a dead-end job that meant nothing to me, but at least I was doing a good job, I had my own office, team and a decent salary at the end of the month that helped me live on my own, buy nice stuff, travel and save money at the same time. I was content.

Now I have no source of income, I have no source of direction, and I have no idea what I should be doing in order to gain control over my life. And all of my surroundings do not help me. No one cares, they all want me to find a job as soon as possible, and not any job, a stable job that I can be stuck at it for the rest of my life. Or maybe it’s just my mother. I do need a break from her. Everytime I go home, we fight, over and over. I can’t hold my temper when someone is pressuring me to do anything I can’t do. It’s the same with the obsessed-with-keeping-things-cleaned housemate, I can’t live in a place where I have to keep worrying about cleaning, and making sure everything is clean all the fucking time.

Today, late afternoon, I went to the University, which I haven’t been at for over four to five years. I must confess I was anxious. I was anxious to go to the university. Can you believe that? It’s has been years. But I would never go that far to the campus of the University of Haifa (though I live in the same city, the bus ride is extremely long), while having no business there.

I was invited for an introduction meeting for a new programme – a graduate programme for the theatre department. It’s a new programme and they’re introducing it to the Alumni of the theatre department. It was somehow interesting, it’s the first time they’re opening a graduate programme for the theatre department. Though I love this field of theatre, I found the programme unrelated to my future research field. I swore to myself that if I have to study anything in the future, it has to be inspiring and extremely, over-the-top interesting to me, or otherwise I would find it challenging, demanding and I will complain endlessly.

After the meeting I took a walk, a tour, at the university. It had been my home for four years, and I haven’t seen it in forever (five years are like forever to me). It was getting dark, but I enjoyed my walk in my favorite spots, including the library. Every spot brought me back to some memories, and flashbacks: some of them painful and ridiculous, the others are cheerful and nostalgic.

During my small tour, and on my way home, I thought about the new programme, and I thought about my other plans for my future studies. Even though everyone recommends studying abroad, I know I can’t afford it, and I don’t think I’m ready for any kind of scholarship. Getting a scholarship abroad requires more than I can offer, especially when I’m not quite certain about the field in question, and it means I won’t be able to work while studying.

Last year I thought about graduate studies in Films and Television. I thought if I can join this field, I can get into the whole movie business. But I spoke to my cousin (who is an Alumnus), and she advised against it. She said that if I want to learn film making, I have to force myself in the field itself, actively, rather than go to the university to study it.

Another graduate programme I’ve been thinking about for years is English Literature. I already have a BA in English Literature (combined with Theatre), and I enjoyed doing it,studying it, exploring it, and somehow excelling at it.

I wasted my time doing my teaching certificate for English, and for what? To teach? I don’t even want to be a teacher, at least not in schools. I must confess I do feel fulfilled while teaching, and I’ve tried teaching many times in my past. I would pursue it, but not in fucking schools. I simply hate going to school. Even as a teacher.

I would though consider teaching in the academy. It’s fascinating and challenging to teach something I absolutely love, and the more I think about it, I do love English Literature. I do enjoy researching literature: researching the psychological, philosophical and the historical aspects of the literary texts. Career wise, MA in English literature might lead to Ph.D, and that is lecturing at Universities. Or I can simply enjoy the benefit of having the opportunity to study English Literature further than just in BA.

I have few months to think about and apply.

In the meantime, I can continue working in the theatre, if the circumstances allow. And maybe I can try working in films as well, hoping that won’t jeopardize my near future studies.

I started writing this entry at the beginning of the day. I was frustrated, confused and anxious. My tour on campus today was therapeutic, and it led me think about my possibilities for next year, or the near future. It indeed helps taking a walk, going on a journey to the past. My journey, through the walls of the University, and the between the shelves of the library, made me think about my past experience, and my future experience, which contains more light than I imagined.

 

—- This is my first long post, and my first post about my private life. I usually write about my private life and feelings through poetry.

New year, nothing new

So the new year started yesterday. And so well it started: by a terrorist attack in Istanbul.

Isn’t it great? the way the new year starts?

We’re all hungover the next day, unable to do anything, but cope with the disastrous news of the expansion of terrorism through out Europe and the Middle East.

And yet, we keep on writing our very-much hopeful resolutions. Which none is resolved by the next year. Simply because we have too much going on and we have no say in anything.

So this hopeful new year has already started with terrorism, attacks, and there’s still war in the Middle East. Same old, as always.

Some people asked me “are you ready for the new year?” I so innocently responded with “It’s going to happen, whether I’m ready or not.” 2017 is just a number. Time is just a number anyway.

We can write resolution in May and still call them new year’s resolutions.

I decided to be vegetarian in September 2014, and I still am. That was the biggest resolution I kept. I didn’t have to wait for 2015 to start this lifestyle.

We can constantly make new resolutions that will make us better people, and we can only keep them if we truly believe in them and  want them as part of our lives. There’s one thing I learned from the book The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, which I read ten years ago: if I want something so badly, it will happen. Simply because I’ll find a way to make it happen, and somehow, nothing in the world can stop me.  And the same goes to my resolution, as long as they’re real to me, and I want them to be part of my life, I will find a way to make them happen. Now I’m working on becoming vegan. I can’t be part of the whole the animal product processing industries. I know I can do better than this.

I also decided to be healthy. I realized that good health is one of the main factors of well being, and living a fulfilled life. I want that. I want to be and remain healthy. Simply because I love myself and I want to take a good care of myself.

I also decided to be productive and focus on simply aims. For instance, I want to be a writer, therefore I’m looking for methods, whether by keep writing or taking lessons, to improve my writing skills. I need to be determined on this goal. Otherwise, time, which is someone made of combination of numbers, will just take its course on me and make me anxious.

I will also try to go to the gym more often.

It’s Christmas Today -a poem from 2012

Dear readers,

I would like to wish you all a very merry Christmas and a happy and hopeful new year.

I would like to take this opportunity to share a poem I wrote and share every single year on Christmas, just because it means a lot to me. I wrote it in times of agony and distress.

A lot has changed in the past 4 years, but still, this poem brings me back to those old times of desolation.

It’s Christmas today
There should be snow
There should be peace
harmony
and love.

Where is our great friend Santa?
coming from the far away land
to give us what we want
and what we need?

Where is our old and dear friend
Jesus Christ?
Who once came from the dead,
and promised to save our souls?
He is old enough now to keep his promises,
right?

Where is that day?
the twenty fifth of December,
that used to carry our jolliest dreams?

Where are our dreams?
Are they still lost in the fountain of time?
Or are they still stuck in our surrendered souls?

Where are our hopes, faith and passion?

It’s Christmas today.
No one wishes to be alone
yet no one wishes to be with the beloved ones.
There are no beloved ones.
We are alone…

It’s the end of our time.
The end of our eternity.
A new Millennium is to be born,
And our great Lord knows what it carries.

On this Christmas day,
We will leave our lands,
and join our enemies.

On this Christmas day,
we will leave our hopes and dreams
to join our godforsaken fate.

December 25th 2012

Unsent Letters

We all carry a package filled with feelings. Whenever we meet a certain person, fall in love, or even just like a person; romantically or platonically. Sometimes, even at work, or at school, or anywhere, we meet people, we build a certain kind of friendship, relationship or even hostility towards or with any certain person. We carry feelings: of hatred, disgust, disappointment, friendship, admiration, compassion, love, heartbreak, etc.

Sometimes, we fail to tell people how we feel. We find ourselves tongue tied, embarrassed, shy, afraid, or even angry, and we think of avoiding doing to do anything irrational.

We are unable to show them how we feel.

For my defense, I always say how I feel. At the exact moment, after a short while, or even after a very long while.
I’m old fashioned, I write letters. Pages of feelings, thoughts, and ramblings.
I send those letters, mostly via e-mail. And I wait…
For a response, understanding, compassion… or simply nothing.

I reached a stage where I can no longer say what I feel. Especially after considering the consequences. The fear of rejection,to be misunderstood, to be pitied, or even he fear of knowing the truth.

I end up writing letters, many letters, in my head, in my journal, in my “Drafts” e-mail folder, on papers, in my poems, on my blog, on my phone, anywhere, and I never send them. They’re never delivered. And that specific person I had my heart to utter, never received a word from me.

It’s like having the ability to sing, yet I’m too stage frightened I can never even dare to go up the stage and sing the music I love.

It’s scary… to keep those unsent letters. But I made a folder, in my head, to save all of them. And never ever having the courage to send them.

They will be part of my memory. My journal. I’ll look at them in ten years, and I’ll either delete them for good, burn them, or just just contemplate whether it’s too late to send them, at last.

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