jalal toufic

photograph from Jalal Toufic's book "Vampires. An Uneasy Essay on the Undead in Film".

nicholas nixon


mahmoud darwish - محمود درويش

We should not justify suicide bombers. We are against the suicide bombers, but we must understand what drives these young people to such actions. They want to liberate themselves from such a dark life. It is not ideological, it is despair.
- - -
We have to understand - not justify - what gives rise to this tragedy. It's not because they're looking for beautiful virgins in heaven, as Orientalists portray it. Palestinian people are in love with life. If we give them hope - a political solution - they'll stop killing themselves.
- - -
Sarcasm helps me overcome the harshness of the reality we live, eases the pain of scars and makes people smile. The sarcasm is not only related to today’s reality but also to history. History laughs at both the victim and the aggressor.
- - -
I will continue to humanise even the enemy... The first teacher who taught me Hebrew was a Jew. The first love affair in my life was with a Jewish girl. The first judge who sent me to prison was a Jewish woman. So from the beginning, I didn't see Jews as devils or angels but as human beings.

khalil gibran - جبران خليل جبران

For the first time the sun kissed my own naked face and my soul was inflamed with love for the sun, and I wanted my masks no more. And as if in a trance I cried, "Blessed, blessed are the thieves who stole my masks."
Thus I became a madman.
And I have found both freedom and safety in my madness; the freedom of loneliness and the safety from being understood, for those who understand us enslave something in us.
But let me not be too proud of my safety. Even a thief in a jail is safe from another thief.
(The Madman, 1918)

Your pain is the breaking of the shell that encloses your understanding. Even as the stone of the fruit must break, that its heart may stand in the sun, so must you know pain.
(The Prophet, 1923)



as all my soules bee,
Emparadis'd in you, (in whom alone
I understand, and grow and see,)
The rafters of my body, bone
Being still with you, the Muscle, Sinew, and Veine,
Which tile this house, will come againe.
Thomas Wolfe