Saturday, May 28, 2005

In colored pencil

Here she is, in colored pencil, looking at the menu, or looking away, when life is too small a playground, a million new stories to fill her world with laughter and mine, a million new horizons hiding behind the one she sees from her balcony, and one silly me, doubtful and afraid, waiting outside in the dark.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

In a corner of his bedroom

In a little corner of his bedroom, he gathered, save one, all the things he cherished in his cruel and endearing world: a ray of sunlight, a window, a keyboard, a book, a painting, a family, a home, a gift, a country, a small indoor tree.

But only looking at them in a picture could he truly feel how much he loved them. Close to them, and around them, sometimes he would suffocate. Maybe it was his presence rather than theirs that suffocated him. Or maybe it was just life in a picture, serene and peaceful, that looked better and felt better than the one that moved with and around him. While his life viciously bounced him around like a rubber ball, it always managed to pull itself closer to him, making him grow more and more attached to its every beat and every moment.

Until it all eventually went away.

He wondered whether he will miss these little fragments of existence, when, soon, he will have to leave them. Yes. Very much. Maybe he will carry the picture in his wallet to remind himself how people are never satisfied with what they have, until they don't have it anymore. And how they will never want the happiness they already have, but the one waiting for them around the corner.

People, he thought, seed their existence with disappointment and pain, while peace and contentment are a pair of eyeglasses they have on and look through, but can never find. People like him, who have many things to look for, but not a thing to see.

In a small corner of his bedroom, he sat down next to his keyboard, and threw a long gaze by the trees into the horizon. His mind wandered away again while his fingers clumsily found the keys to an unfamiliar, slightly off-tune melody, that held him close to it like a mother.

He was tired and ready to let go but he kept playing until he calmly fell asleep.

Sunday, May 08, 2005

Aoun is back

I hate being skeptical, as much as I hate having a murky outlook on the future. But I can't help remembering the first days following Lahoud's election. The way the lebanese people were hailing and cheering made me feel it wasn't the coming of a new president I was witnessing, but, and pardon the comparison, the second coming of Christ. And here we are, seven years later, dealing with the sorriest, and the deservedly most vilified political figure in recent lebanese memory.
Now granted, Aoun is different. If anything, he certainly, and quite "eloquently", expressed his wrath against Syria and the neverending syrian tutelage over Lebanon. On the other hand, his conflict with the Lebanese Forces, its reasons and its eventual outcome, are definitive dark spots on his political record as a leader with a mission and a dream.
At any rate, and putting all past events and considerations aside, Aoun might very well be the savior and unifier we've all been waiting for, BUT I really think we should avoid premature coronations and sanctifications. The military ranks are a very fertile ground for self-proclaimed heroes and megalomaniacs, and, with all due respect to all the great people who came out of the army, the last thing we need right now is a man with a God complex to rule over us.
What we need is a smart savvy politician, with an unshakable loyalty to the lebanese nation and people, who can bring us all together, not just for a couple of months, to get the syrians out, or to protest against the killing of prominent politicians, but to rebuild a unified and powerful country, with a broad path into a safe and prosperous future.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

As he lies still

As he lies still, on the humid grass of his frontyard, a silver moon peeking behind the hill keeps a watchful eye over him, and ten little stars holding hands are dancing for him in a small flickering circle. He smiles. His eyes are open yet he is asleep. He dreams of a little boat, waltzing with the fish and the sea shells, under the same ten stars dancing, under the watchful eye of the same silver moon. A little breeze carries two little mist drops and lays them on his little nose. A lady beetle slowly climbs on his left cheek and curls up to rest.
He smiles again.

His life so far has been everywhere, but where he was. He would see it, stretch his arm to maybe touch it, or hold it even , but it would quickly fade away like a dream. His life, he thought, was supposed to be somebody else's. The gods must have made a mistake when he got this lot, and his lot was certainly given to someone else, someone else who would not know what to do with it. Alas, all his life, all he could do was seek something he wanted very, very much, something he felt was his own, and which he somehow knew he could never reach.

As the lazy stems of grass gracefully sway, before caressing his bare skin, he wakes up. The boat is gone. But the stars and the moon are still here, dancing and watching over him. The lady beetle wakes up too, turns around to adjust its position, and settles down a little higher on his left cheek to rest. Three tears fill his lower eyelid but don't roll down. The stars twinkle a little stronger and a cricket sings a familiar song. A new smile finds its way back to his lips, a wide smile only on the right side, so not to disturb lady beetle's sleep. He closes his eyes and finds his boat, again, waltzing with the moon's reflection, again, waiting for him to go on a new wonderful quest of his true life and many things beautiful and grand.
And yet, for the first time in a long time, he feels that it doesn't really matter whether he leaves or stays where he is. Here is good, he murmurs to himself, maybe the best place he's ever been, or ever will be.
His docking island.
His home.
He looks up to the sky for a last few seconds, whispers goodnight to the dancing stars, silver moon, sleeping lady beetle, and all the little creatures of the little corners of his world.
Then he hops onto his rocking boat, with eager anticipation, and quickly, yet calmly, fades away in the wide, endless sea of a marvelous dream.