Growing Old

you do not grow old till …

…. you stand for something you do not understand.

…. a good sleep is like your first shave, just a distant memory .

…. you avoid to look at the mirror.

…. from time to time you check if your shadow hasn’t left you yet.

…. death and making a cup of coffee becomes a matter of time management.

…. you see yourself unscrewing your head and kicking it away.

…. you feel like a bag full of broken glass,  broken yet breakable.

…. you do not jump off a bridge out of politeness.


I hate the term grow old, we do not “grow” but wither away

or may be it is just me


P.S. this was written in the heat of Libyan civil war late March 2011, now there is more hope than gloom

مغير إصبري ياعين لاتطريهم

I tried to translate this poem but I could not, how would anyone translate such pain.

The story behind poem goes like this, The lady “Haja Hamaalah” has lost two sons “Salem” and “Breik” in the notorious abou Sleem’s massacre.

She was waiting for their return for years while they were dead, she was told by the Ghaddafi’s Regim that they were well and safe. More than 12oo political prisoners were executed in one day in the Abou Sleem Jail. The regime did not inform the families for years and untill today no one knows where the victims are buried.


the poem it self:

she pegs her eyes not to bring the images of her sons to her, she closes her eyes when she says that verse as if she is still hunted by their images, she goes on to say that she does not want to remember their presence nor the hour they were taken in. Her longing to them is beyond the capacity of her mind.

She describes the hour in which her family heard the news of the her sons death as if she is a witness not a victim her self (in a beautifully selfless way) then she prays to god to give the rest of her family the strength to forget.

She then remembers how foolish she was believing the government officials (Dogs) when they said her sons were alive.

She explains how she carries the pain through the day and the night and that she is living only because her time has come yet.



  • This is not a translation, not even near. I do not think you can translate it if you have a shred of a soul in you.
  • The poem does not have any anger in it, just the pain of a wounded mother
  • Haja Hamaalah died few weeks ago not knowing where her kids were buried !



 مغير إصبري ياعين لاتطريهم

بريك وسالم لي لا تجيبهم
لا تجبدي سيرتهم ولا تجبدي الساعه شالتهم

ناء طامعهم قبل في جيتهم

واليوم مايساوي العقل شوقه فيهم

مشوا في سوقه بريك وسالم يابعاد الشوقه

ما حسبت خباره تجينا سوده

على الإثنين إللي نراجو فيهم

جتنا بوقه.. إساعه حداش على سماح التوقه

تمت معانا نارهم موقوده يوم الخبر ياما صار ياما فيهم

 تمت عشيه..  صالح يغرد والدمعه سخيه

علي بريك وسالم ماشيين ضحيه

ونحنا غافلين ماعلمنا بيهم

ننشدوا في كلاب على قصاد النيه

يقولوا طيبيين وما سو يجيهم !؟

ما حسبت نبقى بلاهم حيه

غير الأيام لابد ما نوفيهم

كاتبه مولانا غيباهم هلي لهم حدود منان

ا خلوا خوتهم سامرين حزانا

لا الدمع كف ولا النوم يجيهم

نا طالبه من ربنا سبحانه نريده يصبرهم وينسيهم

تجبدي غيابي بريك وسالم من خيار شبابي

نا اليوم خلوني مغير نكابي

ناخذ الليل ونا نهاتي بيهم

ما تجبدي منامي بريك وسالم كانهم قدامي

ننقانهم قهروني في عقاب زماني

إمفيت يصبرني الله عليهم

ما تجبدي الرفاقه

بريك وسالم إللي لهم مشتاقه

ننقانهم عقوني اليوم شينك عاقه

لا مغير علينا لا مغير عليهم

إصبري ياعين لاتطريهم

بريك وسالم لي لا تجيبهم

شعر المرحومة الحاجة حمالة

Nafusa Mountains Facts Sheet

Working with the Libya Hurra group “from the Nafusa Mountains” gave me an access to some facts in regards to what is happening there.
Here is what have been compiled so far, all the following information comes straight from the ground and verified by different resources. I believe we need to speak for the people of Nafusa Mountains.
–          The financial institutions in Yefren and Algalaa have been closed and there has been no access to cash since February 17th 2011.
–          There has been no electricity, gas and petrol for two months.
–          Between 7000 and 10,000 civilians are trapped in the towns of Yefren and Algalaa, the remainder appx. 40,000 civilians have been displaced to other towns in the Nafusa Mountains, Tripoli and Tunisia prior to the complete siege (Normally, population of Yefren and Algalaa is estimated to be in the range of 170 000 or more including Awiniya and Riyanah, etc).
–          Water wells in Romiya region taken by Gaddafi forces and no water supply to people in Yefren and Algalaa. People now depend on water collected from rain in reservoirs, which is also ending this week and turning to water is contaminated with worms. The reservoirs that have been located by Gaddafi have been contaminated with oil. The Main Water Tank in Saffeet for Yefren and Algalaa has been damaged by missile and has been out of operation for six weeks.
–          No food has entered since the 1st of March, no vegetables, fruits. There is no possibility to get food in and milk to children especially for those under 6 months old. People have been living on Macaroni. Food supplies from warehouses have finished and supplies including spaghetti, oil and tomato are expected to run out in the next two weeks. Souk district has about 80% of supermarkets and food stores and were taken away by Gaddafi forces. Alglaa Souk is mostly for clothes and other thing with smaller food stores.
–          There is no access to medicine or refrigerators to store the medicine (For diabetics, high blood pressure, and heart, vaccination and cancer patients). The temperature is now over 30 degrees. There is also no access to hospital as Yefren hospital taken by Gaddafi snipers. Clinics are inexistent in Yefren and Algalaa and the majority of doctors were foreigners and have fled.
As regards of illnesses, estimates as follows:
1. Diabetics and hypertensive: appx. 500 cases;
2. Epilepsy: about 10 cases;
3. Cardiac problems 50 or more;
4. known civilians that are wounded 30-50 that have no access to treatment (cases included infected wounds; injuries occurred due to shelling of civilian areas and there are those from direct conflict;
5. Cancer: about 10 that require urgent attention for daily dialysis;
6. Leshmania: endemic and it starts in May.
7. Children: diarrhoea, dryness, and other common problems of children, etc;
8. Ladies problems, appx. 50 known miscarriages due to hardship,
9. Others: Psychiatric problems; social problems, family separation, migration, loss of jobs etc
– Abortion cases in women have no access to hospital as Yefren hospital taken by Gaddafi forces
– Wounded people can not be taken out.

Not much to say but ..

I have not written here for so long that I wonder if it is worth keeping a blog. there are far too many topics to write about but lately I feel like a dry well, no matter how much it rains it stays waterless.

every now and then I have a “to write list” but I never keep my promises. Today I would like to share with you my latest “to write list”. may be one day I will go through it and do something about it.

To Write List:

1- the Internet States (short story)

A short story based on an imaginary world in which virtual (on line) states became part of the pop culture. the story is a reflection on the dynamic definition of “Identity” and the evolution of the language in parallel to that. I wish it to be a dark comedy. I did not work much on it, I only have the basic idea of the story and that you can upgrade your identity using the iDentity application

2-  War and Peace

A series of satire articles about the current political affairs in the Arab World and the region.

3-YAWAHAN (a long short story)

After I have reading Camus’s “outsider” and Sartre’s “nausea”, I always thought that a third story is needed. I do not dare claiming that I would write something that can be compared to Camus’s or Sartre’s writing. Yawahan is ,simply, a suggestion of what I wish someone else have written.

4- the League of the Pathetics  (a series of short stories)

A series of short stories written by a clinically depressed  author, his (or her,  gender is not decided yet) aim of writing these stories is to feel better about herself\himself by toying with the characters in a cruel way but sometimes the stories get developed in manner that distress or pleases the author in unexpected ways. I have few thoughts to kick of the series but have not written a word yet.

5- rewrite “the undertaker of Baghdad” (a Play)

to those who do not know, this was a script I have written for a couse I a screen writing couse I took sometime ago, I wish to rewrite it as a play but never got the chance to do so.

6- “an ungodly hour” (a series of short stories)

the stories are in a near future world in which the scientific advances lead to ability of capturing the consciousness of dead people, that lead to a human made judgment day and a human made hell and heaven.

so this is my list and who knows, I might do something about someday 🙂