I went to watch Annemarie Jacir's short films yesterday, and they gave me the most bizarre mix of feelings. I was a little bit uncomfortable, a lot interested and very disturbed. I hate how sometimes I need to be slapped in the face by things I hear and view to bring me back to reality. I spend half my time in one of the levels of the sky where I can sit with my thoughts and a blank stare for those looking at me, and spend the rest of my time entranced with things taking place around me. And oh, a third of this time I spend laughing.
But back to the subject, I really hate that everyday things we busy ourselves with can make us forget what really is taking place around us, and that our problems are trivial next to others'. Is being blinded to others' needs and complications part of the greater picture? Part of the test? Part of the puzzle?
That is why I try not to blame others for not caring, the human mind is only capable of remembering a certain amount of things, and if you have a $20,000 debt and three hungry children, then it is underrstandable why you may not care about Darfur, or Palestinians. But can we really use that as an excuse? Aren't we supposed to raise our kids to care about others, yet we bypass beggars and the hungry without taking a second look.
Hastings street in Vancouver with the junkies and traffic lights and the balad with young beggars in Amman. I think we have an on-off button for our conscience ... I could go on forever, but I can't, cause I need to get back to work.
Once again, the point of this post was the Annemarie Jacir films, so back to that, quickly. I may not understand the artistic shots and editing, but I do like the feelings they give me, and the way it makes me really try to figure out what's taking place on the screen in front of me, to the point that I am no longer watching the movie and instead I'm frantically working every functioning brain cell in trying to understand what these shots are about. When I realize that I had missed half the movie is when I begin to bug the person next to me with questions like "What's happening, now?" and "Why did this happen?" and "What did he just say?"...
Anyways, I really liked this poem by Tawfiq Zayyad that stuck with me titled "Here we will stay". Part of it was displayed in the end of Annemarie Jacir's "Like 21 impossibles"
'Here we shall stay:In Lydda, in Ramlah, in the Galilee,
We shall remain
Like a wall upon your chest,
And in your throatLike a shard of glass,
A cactus thorn,
And in your eyes,
We shall remain
A wall upon your chest,
Cleaning dishes in your restaurants,
Serving drinks in your bars,
Sweeping the floors of your kitchens
In order to snatch a bite for our children
From your blue fangs.
Here we shall stay: Singing our songs,
Taking to the angry streets,
Filling prisons with dignity.
In Lydda, in Ramlah, in the Galilee,
We shall remain,
Guarding the shade of the fig and the olive,
Fermenting rebellion in our children
As is yeast in the dough.'