. “Gaza Walls, unique papers of stone..!”
Do you want to know something about Gaza? Well, it’s too simple. Have a tour in Gaza streets and you will know every single minute detail about it.
Gaza is the place where you are free to the level that you may express your feelings on the streets’ walls. But notice, they are not ordinary feelings. They are the feelings which have never been felt by any one, but Palestinians!
I may never understand the ABCs of life as Gaza walls that store sagas do! And I cannot tell a story like a child drawing his dreams on streets’ walls can do!
Gaza walls, daily “newspapers of stone” that can convey every thing better than any book, song, or even an eyewitness!
Gaza, this un-comprehendible land! The land of the people who dissolve in their exhaustion to the extent of no explanation!
The area here is not geography, and it has never been so! Here is a city that distinguishes itself as a remarkable one throughout the history of places! It is not only a land; its boarders can not be simplified on a map, and can not be drawn on paper!
Gaza knows how to save its history, how to tell its tales to the whole world without words, and how to engrave the images of its martyrs and leaders, days of grief and joy, and its seriousness and irony in the same time!
A tour in Gaza streets will be enough to tell you about martyrs, freedom fighters, assassinated or killed only for being Gazans! Our walls are our daily newspapers that keep the dates that exhaust our memory, too many dates! They keep the images till they are washed by rain, or faded away by summer sun!
A walk in an alley will till you the stories of those who live in its area, those old men and women who retuned pure after their pilgrimage,
those who have lost their son forever in an aggressive Israeli attack, and decided not make anybody forget him!
and those who have just married and their congrats painting is still new on the alley’s walls!
You may see also some cartoons spread everywhere with an expressive statements
Wait, never think that a walk in Gaza streets will disturb you with bleak sad images and statements. In this land of contradictions, there is always a smile in each tear, and a tear behind each smile. There is always a new life under every destroyed building, and a worry from destruction behind every restored building! Gaza walls can tolerate all such contradictions.
Still there is a space for normal life. You will definitely see some advertisements of hairdressers, taxi offices, teaching centers… etc
And another space for fun and exchanging jokes!
This sentence is written by an old man who went mad thinking he is an ‘atomic scientist’. You can see it on most of Gaza walls, and even in Egyptian Rafah and Al-Arish cities.
Life does not seem to be some repeated breaths, but there is something of details’ hustle inhaled into the lungs too!
When you take a taxi from your home to a place you go daily for, you notice how you have never got bored with reading what is written on streets’ walls, although they need long time to be renewed.
In Gaza, you may read a congratulation statement for a groom one day, and read his death notice some days after!
Gaza, where life and death are two terms of the same meaning! Death was not far from the survived! And the dead people do not go away from life, but they are still alive in the city exhausted memory.
The images are resurrecting them every single second, in streets noise, in the blueness of the sea and sky, in the roar of remote waves, and in the night air breeze! No place to forget here and no place to remember too! There is a grey area, in which we go deep in forgetting in order to remember, and go deep in writing history in order to forget. We are still in this grey area, in which every thing is present and absent, dead and alive at the same time!!
Gaza, where there is an explosion of questions about humanity/inhumanity, meaningfulness/ meaninglessness, life/death, identity/loss, reality/unreality.
Gaza is the land where a free bird raises thousand meanings of freedom.
Where a twittering sound causes a grief that poetry can not describe.
Where the air becomes the pleasure of lovers, and the breaths of those who are unified with its atmosphere.
Gaza, where things turn from its nature to become natural, where phosphor becomes a familiar smell of lemon trees! And blood becomes a feature of olive, and orange color!
Gaza, where we are resurrected after every death, and renew our sadness, victory, and defeat as well! Where neither the land memory nor the globe can forget us!
Israeli writings on Al-Sawaferi family’s house! “Death for Arabs”
Unfortunately Israel, we will never die, as long as we have children who engrave their dreams on stone, spread them above sky clouds, and paint them on the rainbow!
We will never die, as long as you know you are only mist that will vanish soon!
We will never die, as long as we have mothers who breastfeed their babies the love of Palestine instead of milk!
By Ruba Monzir
Some of the sentences above are translation of an amazing Arabic text about Gaza by the great Gazan writer (Alaa’ Al-Susi).