Friday, 24 July 2009
I'm alone again. I’m 18 :D. Its 6am, and it seems i have developed a very bad habit of staying awake until the sun slashes the sky with red and orange.
I lack passion. It seems everything these days seems so trivial and meaningless to me and i don't know why. I swear I’m almost approaching a catatonic state.
The romantic heavens opening each sunrise to let your dreams wander above, the deep prayer call resonating in the dark, the red and orange landscape fused with crumbling but proud buildings. Your senses are always assaulted by the most overpowering scenes and smells. The dream like state you feel yourself in. The list can go on forever, and you would still not understand.
At the same time, the very things that i hated, are the things that i secretly long to see. I want to see the tiny lizards walking on the ceiling. I want to see the layer of red sand that would engulf every possible thing. Swirling sands keeping the whole city still. I want to feel the waves of heat that tire you out, before your day has even begun.
There is no place like home. I have learnt the majority of Iraqis have a love hate relationship with Iraq. But what that really means is we yearn for Iraq. There is no hate, just an empty resentment that life couldn’t be different. That it’s taking so damn long.
I lost my flag the other day, in the mess of travelling. I felt such a deep remorse, that i would have grieved for it, and wore black for a day. The badly sown piece of fabric had been with me for so long. It had re enforced me through times of feeling lost, calmed me through irrepressible anger. It almost seemed to define who i was at one point. Everyone has something which reminds them of their very foundation. I went on a mission to find another flag. Every day i became more agitated. Almost afraid that if I didn’t replace it, i would lose my identity.
The queues are endless, the vocabulary of the people now resembles a almost South Park-like frequency of swear words. Baghdad has piles of rubbish rotting on pavements in most areas, even next to some of the most prestigious hotels and streets. Old men sit on white plastic chairs, sipping tea whilst commenting on the messed up generation of today. Young guys walk around street corners irritably, as if waiting for something that will never happen. Girl’s loud laughter rings through your ears, as their strong perfume wafts into your nose, even though they are meters away. Children sell you sweets or cling onto their mothers, their eyes yet unfilled by a childhood lost.
Is it possible to love something that brings back so many bad memories? That leaves a bitter taste in your mouth? And instead of any emotion, all you feel is a longing? Passion? It is possible, though at times, it would be easier if it wasn't. Iraq is the first place that i learnt how to smile. How to laugh. How to see beauty.
I often forget, amongst the sour scenes of Iraq, we all learned to appreciate life that little bit more with every round of gun fire, with every smashed window, with every dark stranger lurking.
It also instilled this great fear in me. This aching fear that i need to do everything now. Achieve all that i wanted now, before i ran out of time. Do good, do bad, be stupid. I rarely thought about anything, and acted on impulse. (I still do, these days, it seems i have no moral sense of right and wrong anymore)
These days are Iraq is seen as a political orgy. I rarely see people refer to Iraq as a country, a Land, a Home.