Thursday, 16 October 2014

ابدال، يحيى فضل الله-انجليزي



Original Text by: Yahya Fadlalla
Translated from Arabic by: Mustafa Mudathir
Note: Yamustafa is delighted to inaugurate a section in Arabic for literary and cinematic writings. Guest writers, not ghost writers, are welcome.

It was an evening in Ottawa of unveiling clouds; stripping of copious rain.
She was walking ahead of me. lightly running, I should say.
With a nervousness ascertained to me when she hurled the Pepsi can and then kicked it with her left foot.
The can’s sonorOus rattle on the asphalt resonated well with the beauty in her tension.
I was hiding under my umbrella; a useful trick I had learned lately from watching the weather channels before I left home.
It also was a scheme that while I was hiding under my umbrella, she trotted her tension ahead, indifferent to the falling rain, but soaked up to the extent of vague sexual invocations. Did I say vague sexual invocations?
I had probably envisioned such a wetly beauty while bathing.
She kept bouncing ahead of me; her purse oscillating from her left shoulder to bear the burden of absorbing the harmonic elegance of her graceful tense body in its orchestrated intolerance of any discord. Her hair maintained its chaos in consort with bursts of drizzle that fell on her face as they conspired with the blowing breeze from the opposite direction.
A breeze unlike the one old poets delegated to visit their loved ones on their behalf. We both walked against the rain; apparently to the same destination; the Mackenzie King bus station from which buses were scattered in the four directions of the city.
I decided to abandon it. Was I not a creature of rain? I folded the umbrella to align myself with the bursts of rain; hoping for a unity, even if only when it rained, with the blissful carnival ahead of me.
In the waiting area at the station Mackenzie King, I followed other umbrellas with changing colors as people moved in and out of the Rideau Center.
But I also followed her. She had entered the indoor waiting area before me. When I spotted her, she was shaking her hair left and right and in graceful circles to rid herself of raindrops. She then walked to a dimly lit corner to examine herself in front of a glass wall capable of enduring the entirety of her beautiful body.
The waiting area swarmed with travelers. She moved to the phone hanging on the wall after she relieved the glass wall of her worrisome appearance and of its being a reliable mirror. Red buses were coming and going. People entered and others departed.
She screamed insults at someone on the other side of her conversation. All kinds of modern day obscenities yelled out of her.
She became so mad that she kicked and punched the wall several times. She cursed and yelled. Shouted and cursed. And when her voice got overwhelmed by her crying, she slammed the phone violently and hurled a high-pitched insult to an unknown entity, double-kicked the wall and entered into a sobbing fit. In the middle of her fit and shakes she pulled off her pink shirt declaring wild full-blown breasts over which a sleeveless top was loosely worn. With shaky hands, she wiped tears and rain drops from her face
and collapsed in a sitting position against the wall. Only her tears would reveal her silent crying.
I looked up at a wall clock. Seven thirty six. I shifted to the schedule board, scanning the charts for bus number 97 to South Keys. Luckily, I turned when bus number 84 just came in. I saw her lining up to board it! Instantly I decided to take it. Bus number 84 also went up to South Keys; only it had a lengthy itinerary in South West Ottawa. I had to desert the idea of a quick arrival home and spend some time following her. Now there was only this old lady between us in line. She was holding high a big umbrella with the colors of the Canadian flag. The girl appeared less tense. But a deep moan laced with, apparently, a history of losses; a moan scratched by residual crying; a moan of unlimited pain propelled audibly through her chest and out when she stepped to board the bus.
The old lady insisted on keeping her umbrella unfolded until she was seated by the bus driver when I noticed that the girl had tied her shirt around her waist. Down her neck and further down to the wet sleeveless top, raindrops slid from locks of her disheveled hair.
I noticed I was also wet. I was following her as wet as could be. I used my umbrella as a walking stick; held it in my right hand and did not think of any purpose, other than a walking aid, for it! I might have been trying to ward off a suspicion of failure to appreciate beauty or simply trying to preserve a relation with the rain! I might have had to know how beauty related to adversity.
Why was she so miserable to the extent of blatant disintegration that conveyed only to tears and confusion.
She sat on the last seat in the front section of the bus. I sat on the first seat in the rear section which offered a look from above because the rear part was three steps higher. I was above but close enough to see tears in those green eyes.
In fact it was my first encounter with tears that belonged to green eyes! She wept in silence.
From my seat, I could see her facial features registering various emotions. Tears flooded her eyes and slid down her carefully carved nose descending on her lips. Of course, I never failed to follow the receding raindrops from the tufts of her hair.
Of all the passengers, a mix of ethnicities and skin colors, and despite the clatter, I could hear that moan coming from a terrible disaster. A moan allied to the rain that washed the city in that evening in Spring. A rain so inciting to a night unrestrained.
Only me could hear her. She did not seem to bother about her free-flowing tears.
I did not lose interest in following her from a distance so close; from an obvious yet a hidden place. I thought about ‘what if she has to disembark in the next or any of the stops before South Keys’. Should I follow her?
Flipping through some possibilities, I came to realize I was totally biased to the idea of a ‘loosening up’ as a unique feature of Saturday nights! A deep and distinct moan
of a sorrow-revealing nature, brought my mind back with a startle.She had nervously opened her purse.
With trembling fingers, she took out a photo album. I shifted my body to a ‘ready mode’ that would enable me to see the photos in the album which she suddenly decided to keep in her lap for a while. She, then took a deep breath and leaked a dispossessed sigh. She opened her purse again and took out an average-sized envelope.
When she opened the album again, I could see two photos on its first page. She and a young man whose hair was dyed a metallic blue. The second photo showed her with the same young man but in a more intimate, close to a kissing pose. Suddenly, she tore the first photo from the album and reduced it to pieces with her face abuzz with pain.
She took out the next photo, tore it and stuffed its pieces in her purse. Opening the envelope, she took out a bunch of photos, chose one and placed it on the rectangular space previously occupied by the first picture she had destroyed. This new photo was for her with a dog.
The substitution was carried out with a clear expression of vengeance on her teary face. She took a different photo from the envelope and stuck it in place of the second photo she had destroyed. The dog in this new photo seemed to have just finished kissing her on the cheek. It was a somewhat black and brown German Shepherd with smart eyes.
It was raining heavily now. I realized I wasn’t paying attention to the bus stops.
She repeated this act of pulling out pictures, shredding them and stuffing her purse with shredded remains of photos. She did it with changing emotional expressions on her face. From my seat, my place above but close, I could see that she destroyed all photos that had that guy in them and replaced them with photos of a different friend.
More than ten photos in different places, fashions and poses were substituted. I noticed that the Canadian Parliament building, destroyed in the first photo, was replaced with one that showed the Parliament in which the dog stood in an erect position with his front feet rested on her breasts. Although many places did not survive destruction, other new buildings appeared on the dog’s photos.
Just before the bus reached South Keys, she looked somewhat relaxed and quiet. She noticed her tears, untied the pink shirt from around her waist and wiped her face. I could still see a shade of sadness looming on her beautiful face.
At South Keys, bursts of rain were still identifying that Saturday night with an inherent call for non-restraint. She disembarked, offering her slender body to the sting of raindrops. I left the bus behind her, as a follower.
I did not unfold my umbrella but sought refuge in one of those red kiosks. She stood for the rain to wash her and take full advantage of her shapeliness.
Before taking number 142 to Feather Lane, where I lived, I saw her walk to a litter box. She opened her purse, took out the shredded photos and threw them in the litter box.
She did this with what I sensed was like the most beautiful of all the tensions I had seen her in.

And while I was feeling my steps onto bus number 142, I saw her light a cigarette and take a deep breath. Then I saw her shake her hair to free it from the bursts of rain, but to no avail.

Thursday, 9 October 2014

MCR: Caution, Powerful Emotions Ahead!

Mazin Elsadig's WELCOME BACK!

This forty nine minutes semi-biopic documentary Welcome Back follows a Canadian activist on his first visit to his original homeland Sudan after 21 years of exile. It is a warm tribute from Mazin Elsadig (of Degrassi-Next Generation), the filmmaker to his own father. A truly emotional and loving account of how the father's journey back home reveals the continued and mutually felt sense of belonging to the people in that part of Africa, who retain their yearnings and hopeful expectations for their loved ones "till death do them part"!

The Country That Hates Me, Awaits Me!
The massive reception of an ordinary person (who is actually not so ordinary as the film reveals at some points) is one representation of the moral codes of a society still based on the extended form of family.
The movie is narrated in a happy way in chapters: Travel, arrival and back to Canada . From the outset the call for prayer azzan on a background of African drums places the viewer into the cultural mood. This is then augmented by one of Sudan's favorite singers on the Oud (lute) instrument, Mohamed Elamin. A sure source of nostalgia aided by good cinematography.
Upon arrival, everyone is excited and the scenes of hugs, outbursts and festivities are so grasping. To all this, good African music is set as a backdrop, especially the meeting at Rabak town from where the visitor and his companions would cross the White Nile to his island of birth, Aba Island. It is imperative when telling about a political activist, which is the other descriptive of the visitor, to endure some political history and therefore listen to some recitations and musings from important political analysts, oh! and also from the visitor himself, bearing in mind that it is a film on him. But don't panic! The movie maker would intervene in due time and some heartily beaten drums will have you stamping the floor.
The movie is really fun to watch particularly by those who disbelieve stories about their dads' homeland told mostly by their moms. It is actually not about absence and return. It's about how this is equaled in tears, drums and well-deserved feasts.

Movie Specs

"Welcome Back" 2011, 49 min.
Color, Dolby Digital.
Genre: documentary Drama/family/history.
Countries: Canada, Sudan and Spain.
Production: By Any Means Necessary(BAMNFILMS).*
Cast: Elfadil Elhashimi, family and extended family.
Editing & Cinematography: Mazin Elsadig.
Music: Patric McGroarty.
Directed by: Mazin Elsadig.

Note On The Movie Maker

"Mazin Elfadil Elsadig (born September 2, 1987 in Cookesville, Illinois) is an American actor who portrayed Damian Hayes on Degrassi: The Next Generation, guest starring in season 6 and being added to the opening credits in season 7. Besides Degrassi, Mazin has appeared in the Disney Channel Original Movie, Jump In!, along with fellow Degrassi actors Paula Brancati and Jajube Mandiela. He is also known for the Canadian TV show Stoked as the voice of Broseph." courtesy Wiki. Also read on Mazin in these two links:
Mazin on IMDb
Mazin on Degrassi Wiki

* By Any Means Necessary is not a phrase to pass by without a note. It was originally used by French philosopher and playwright Jean Paul Sartre in his play Dirty Hands and was translated to English as follows: "I was not the one to invent lies: they were created in a society divided by class and each of us inherited lies when we were born. It is not by refusing to lie that we will abolish lies: it is by eradicating class by any means necessary." 
But the phrase was entered into American pop culture by Malcolm X in his last speech in 1965 and was highlighted by Spike Lee in his depiction of Malcolm X in his 1992 movie. The term is now perpetuated by Mazin and Co. and hopefully will snowball into in-depth representations of reality.

Saturday, 27 September 2014

مقطع من (هاجس السأم)، أسامة الخواض

دعونا ننسِّق هذا الفضاء،
بلا نظرٍ مُسْبقٍ في النصوصِ،
نحاول ما حاولته الشعوب 
الحديثة من نظرٍ فاحصٍ 
في كتاب الطبيعةِ،
لا تشترونا بتلك الوعود،
ولا تجرفوا يأسنا من حقول الأماني،
ولا ترجمونا بهذي الحروف العتيقةِ،
إنّا سئمنا نصوص الجدودِ،
سئمنا وعود الجدودِ،
دعونا نشاكس أجدادنا،
فسنرمقهم إن أصابوا بعين الرضا،
و نعلِّقهم من سراويل أوهامهم،
بحبال المتاحف،
إنْ أخطأوا،

دعونا لخبْرتنا الأنثوية في الجمْع بين الطبيعةِ،
لا توغلوا في الوراء الضبابيِّ،
سوف نصلِّبكم في جذوع الهجاء،
لكم دينكمْ،
والجدال العقيمْ

لكم دينكمْ،
و "عفا الله عمَّا سلفْ"

ولنا ديننا،
والنهار بألوانه الدافئةْ

اللوحة من أعمال الفنان راني السماني

Published 2014-10-18, 8:20 pm.

Friday, 26 September 2014

حجر، نبلة وراحة بال، راني السماني

**راني السماني
حَجَرْ ونِبْلَةْ
عَشِيقْ وحَبِيْبَةْ

طِفِلْ و أُسْرَةْ..
عَالَمْ مِنْ الألَمِ الْوِرَاثِيِّ).

ومِنْ بَيْنَ تِفَاصِيلِ هَذَا الْحُزْنِ)
انْشَرَّا الشَّر
الألَمْ جَاكْ

انْفَقَشْ الضَّوْ فِي وِشْ الضَّلْمَةْ
والنَّيلْ أصْبَحْ مَشِيْهُوْ عَدِيلْ
فَاضَ الْخَاطِرْ فَائِضْ قِيمَةْ
وطَارْ حَمَامُوْ يِتْرَجَّاكْ
رَكَّ الْحَنِينْ عَصْفُورْ

عَصْفُورْ فَتْرَانْ فِي جُوَّاكْ
فَتَّشْ فَنَّكْ
و أَمَلْ شَارِدْ
مُشُطْ وَقَصِيْدَةْ

تِتْبَسَّمْ لِيكْ فِي خَجْلَةْ
وإنْتَ تَمَشَّطْ فِي جُوَّاهَا الزُّولْ
حَنِيْنُوْ يَحَنِّنْ
تَفَاصِيلَ النَّحِيبْ
الانْكَشْحْ هناك
ضَفِيرَةْ غَلِيْدَةْ

ضَفِيْرَةْ سَمِيْنَةْ
تَقَرِّيِفْ صَمْتَكْ
بِي رُوحْ الرِّيدْ
وإحْسَاسُ مَقَهْوَجْ
يَطَايْبَكْ جُوَّا زُقَاقَاتْ جُوْفَكْ

دَونْ مَا زِيفْ

يِنْكَشِحْ الْلُّونْ
فِي بِيْتكُمْ حوش
أطْفَالْ و فَرَاشْ
أحْلامْ جَايَّةْ
بِتْعْرِفْ كِيفْ
تَرَتِّبْ تَفَاصِيلَ النِّقَاشْ
تِيْترُا سَايِكِلِينْ
حَقْنَةْ وبَنْسَلِينْ
كَلامْ دُقَاقْ و سماح وَهَّاجْ
يَخَلِّي الْقِيفْ يِنْحَازْ
يَمْرُقْ صَبَاحْ مُرْتَاحْ
وفي الطَّمِي النَّايمْ بِيْ مَزَاجْ جُوَّاكْ
تَنْبُتْ سَنَابِلْ الرُّوحْ
قَبْضَة رِيحَانْ

يَجِيكْ الْفَرَحْ بَاسِمْ
أحْلامْ قَمَرْ حَفْيَانْ
يَنْزِلْ مَعَ الْمَطَرَةْ
اصبع ودبله
امال وردية
وشَوَارِعْ وَرْدَةْ
تَبَشِّرْ إيدْ وُجَدَانْكُمْ زِينْ
وتَفِيْضْ جُوَّاكُمْ وَمْضَة شُوقْ
لِي رِيحَةَ الْبَحَرْ الفايحة عَبِيرْ
تَبِلُّوْا الشُّوفْ بِي حَضْنَةْ وشُوقْ
تَشِدُّوْ الْحِيلْ
(َتَنَقِّدُو)* بَعَضْ
وتَلْدُوْ بِنَيَّةْ شَفِيْفَةْ بِشَكلْ!
تَدَّفِي الْجَرِحْ النَّازِفْ فِيْكْ
وتَعْلِنْ عُمْقَكْ لِلْبَاقِينِ
تَبْقَى حَبِيبَةْ تَحِبَّكْ يَاخْ
وتَرَبُّوْ أوْلادْكُمْ سُتْرَة حَالْ

يَبْقَى الإحْسْاسْ الْبِينْكُمْ كَانْ
مَزَاجْ عَالي
رِسَالَة حُبْ
ورَاحَة بَالْ
راني السماني
١٥ اكتوبر ٢٠١٤

*(َتَنَقِّدُو): نَقَدَ الطَّائِرُ الْحَبَّ : لَقَطَهُ بِمِنْقَارِهِ حَبَّةً حَبَّةً نَقَدَ الدِّيكُ ثُمَّ رَفَعَ رَأْسَهُ وَهُوَ يَحْفِرُ الأرْضَ بِمِخْلَبِهِ.

** راني السماني، تشكيلي وشاعر سوداني.

Publishing date: 10-18-14

Thursday, 25 September 2014

ليموزين القيامة، منصور الصويم

ليموزين الْقِيَامَة*

منصور الصُويّم


أطل سائق الليموزين الباكستاني العجوز من النافذة، نفس الابتسامة الساخرة الماكرة، واللحية المدهونة بالأحمر. ابتسمت له بدوري، صرت زبونه. نعم نفس المشوار، عبر الطريق الدائري ثم شارع الملك فهد وإلى حي الناصرية يا صديق. يضحك العجوز المئوي عن أسنان متساقطة وعينين غائبتين في البياض. غمز بعينه؛ تصدق.

بعد انزلاقنا من مخرج 24 تسلقت المركبة كوبري الدائري الجنوبي بسرعة غير معهودة لدى العجوز الباكستاني، لكنني قلت (خير برضو). انشغلت كالعادة بالجوال، دردشات واتس وفيس، إلى أن أحسست فجأة وكأن السيارة تطير طيرانا وصديقي العجوز المئوي يقهقه، ولحيته المدهونة بالأحمر تلامس وجهي في عصف هوائي كاسح. رفعت رأسي وأبصرت ما يشبه الثلج المنثور وهو يتطاير بكثافة من أمامنا ومن حولنا. تشبثت بالمقعد، ربطت بصعوبة حزام الأمان. العجوز ينظر إلى ويغمز بعينه البيضاء مرة أخرى. "يا صديق، وين رايح بينا". أسنانه المتهدمة تبين وهو يهمس. "القيامة، القيامة يا زول"! ويقهقه.


تشبثت بمقعدي أكثر حين بدا لي أن ما كان يظهر وكأنه نتف ثلج متطايرة قد تحول إلى شرارات من نار تنتشر بكثافة مرعبة من حولنا وفوقنا وتحتنا وتتسرب ما بين هيكل الليموزين لتشوي أجسادنا. سبقني بالقول الفصل قبل سؤاله وعينه تغمز. "الصراط". "شنو؟" "الآن، نعبر جسر الصراط". "صراط شنو؟". " صراط القيامة، إلى الجنة أو النار". قال جملته الأخيرة وداس بقوة أكبر على دواسة البنزين فبدت الليموزين وكأنها تحولت إلى كرة من لهب وهي تشق سبيل الصراط الحاد في قيامته؛ وهناك على اليسار واليمين، كأنهم الدمى يتساقط البشر، أو يطيرون أمامنا على سوق من أجنحة!


أغمضت عيني وأنا أحس باللهب ينقذف إلى داخل الليموزين، تأكدت: نحن الآن في طريقنا إلى جهنم الحمراء. استحقها، يا لكثرة ذنوبي. بكيت بمرارة ربما، حتى هزتني يد العجوز الباكستاني المعروقة. وصوته مشرق بالفرح وصلني "يا صديق، يا زول، الحور العين". "شنو؟". "الحور، حور الجنان.. الله أكبر"! وكنّ هناك بالفعل؛ كاللؤلؤ المكنون، يسبحن في بحور من الورد، شعورهن طليقة، وأجسادهن لدنة ندية، وبأفواهن ابتسامات برق تدعونا أن تعالوا.. قبل أن أفيق تماماً من الصدمة الحورية، فتح سائق الليموزين المئوي الباب وطار إليهن!

كان الليموزين يدور في فراغ انسحاقه، وأصوات مكابح المركبات تملأ الفضاء، والعجوز المئوي يهبني ابتسامة من دماء.

*من مجموعة "موقاي" – نصوص "السعودية"

published 2:38 pm ET 2014-10-15

Grindhouse Article: "Too Bad, Isn't It?"

"Too Bad. Isn't It?"

We owe it to Quentin Tarantino and Robert Rodriguez who gave a new non-obscene meaning to grinding. The couple merely made two separate movies to be shown as a double-feature. Death Proof and Planet Terror, respectively. Likewise, this article is a double-feature!

Gadalla Gubara

Gubara @ CBS network 1962

An African muses over his simple but life-consuming film making in an underdeveloped country.
The video which throws some light on cinema making in Sudan, also serves as an incredibly candid retelling of the simple personal story of a family man who was so kind and loving as to involve his whole family in his artistic endeavors to the extent that most of his children went on to become media experts. The one that didn't, his daughter Sarah, swam her way into international athletic fame.

Gubara Up for a Shoot

Gadalla Gubara is deemed one of the founders of African cinema. He started his film career in 1946. He had good exposure to North African and to West African cinema. The latter, he believed, was the one that really counted in his time. He was well-known to have been one of the event directors of the prestigious FESPACO, Festival panafricain du cinéma et de la télévision de Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. He befriended such prominent figures as Haili Gerima, Ousmane Sembene and Souleymane Cissé.
Although Gubara worked as a professional with Sudan government's Film Unit of the Ministry of Information and executed several documentaries for the government, he also aspired to make feature films. In 1974 he owned his own private studio. In 1979 he made Tajooje, shot on location in east Sudan. In 2005 he made Hugo's Les Miserables, which was one movie he wanted the French people to see! Find out why in this one-hour video below.
In the process of eradicating all things cultural, the dictatorial regime in Khartoum revoked Gubara's studio license and confiscated his land and property, subsequently he lost his vision.
In spite of his simple way of telling his story, Gubara seemed uninterested in mentioning other Sudanese key players who came into the cinema business, other than cinematographer Mr. Kamal Ibrahim. It seems like he only mentored family members which wasn't too bad, was it?

Mohammed Aljjazar

This is a visionary clip with highly advanced tackling of language differences at the alter of a unifying rendering.
The sounds of Arabic and Amharic languages are so fraternized you can discern the similarities.
The video has such a chocolicious feel to it and the lighting is warm and comforting.
Directed by Ali Altigani
Featuring a song by Sudanese singer/songwriter Mohamed Aljjazar and Ethiopian singer Halima Abdarahman.