“Are you still living in asylum like me?”.. Diwan “Scenes recited by the Bedouin” and the journey of alienation and the search for meaning

to the world..

I did not write to stir surprise in the field of your conscience..

Nor to assign the universe jar with a letter..

My words were not a bullet that pierced the tyrant’s chest.

Simply, I write to create bruises in the face of the void

On the impact of these phrases, the book “Scenes Recited by Al-Badawi” by the young Syrian poet Hussein Al-Daher opens. To put the reader from the beginning before the intent of his poetic texts, he writes to make “bruises in the face of the void.”

A void that will remain present as a vocabulary and a basic idea for his 29 poems or scenes that tell a lot about the meaning or “meaningless” of what one suffers after experiencing war, asylum, alienation and loneliness, so that all meanings fall in their wake, and love and the spectrum of a woman prepared for revelation, soliloquy and admonition remain a last resort.

The book, recently issued by Mosaic Studies and Publishing House in Istanbul, extends to 89 pages of medium volume, in which the poet deals with aspects of the Syrian tragedy and its impact on himself through poems/scenes, with which he succeeded in expressing an entire generation of Syrian youth who emigrated and migrated to the countries of the world to escape From a country that has been ravaged by war for many years and still is.

In the presence of asylum and emptiness

In his first poem, the Bedouin recites to us the scene of his asylum in a country that only granted him “the obscenity of its tongue” and the restriction of loneliness. After that, the scenes of asylum follow in the folds of his poems as a linguistic camera depicting in poetic images the life of its owner from travelling, and his aversion to places reached an extent with which cities became common, calling A female to carry her remains:

good morning

Are you still living in asylum like me?

So, if you carry with me the remains of some cities,

I’m tired

In the shadows of this aversion to places of refuge, the herb of alienation grows in the scenes of Al-Daher to renew the signs of vocabulary and metaphors, and the connotation remains one that nests in the hidden side of the body of the poem, and is only revealed as we approach the end of the last scene:

How am I going to tell the peddler that his voice frightens the dove nesting under my armpit?

How am I going to say to this wandering river, it is enough nonsense for you, do not pretend that you are the Euphrates?

How do I say to the policeman standing at the famous bridge barrier

I’m from the south?

An alienation of my place soon turns into a psychological alienation with which the emptiness that used to haunt the Bedouin in the first scenes becomes a fullness that takes all his time with the last scene:

Now I don’t feel lonely anymore and I don’t have time to do anything else

The void fills my time and loneliness

This is how the scenes of Hussein Al-Daher expose the aspects of alienation in our contemporary world, the alienation that the Polish thinker Sigmund Baumann describes as a blessing and a curse at the same time. Which only grows by subsistence on meaning, value and balance.

Al-Daher told Al-Jazeera Net, “The alienation was and is still a plow that stirs the floor of my conscience, from which I began and to which I will end.”

As for asylum, he says, “It is another chapter of the catastrophe; its impact varies from one soul to another, but in the end it is a separation that resembles death to some extent.”

Asylum – as stated in the Diwan – “homes that don’t give their bodies except to the frightened.”

The make poetry more direct and neutral

Despite Al-Daher’s synthesis of a style that is a mixture of accelerated narration and metaphorical description, and what they give the reader an impression of the past events on the level of time, his reliance on the scene to be a form of the poem contributed greatly to creating the literary effect and deluding the reader with the immediacy of the event, especially in poems of a nature Narrative, to enhance the reader’s ability to interact with the poem:

The swing was not in your old house

Just an early flight exercise

right Now

You are the stuck stone

At the bottom of life’s shoes

Annoys her gait

and throw you

This temporal deception was not the only aesthetic that the poem’s shape gave to the poem. The scene in “Scenes Followed by the Bedouin” was the best way through which the poet contained the conflict of opposites witnessed by the text (love and war), (happiness and sadness), (hope and illusion), (homeland). and alienation); So the function of the scene here has become the same as its function in the theater or television drama, which is the interview between the characters, who play their role in this court of those conflicting opposites.

I will sing to you

About our homes as low as hope

And our illusions as high as the palace


In my canyon overlooking the disaster

lie on the eggs of anxiety

Waiting for nice yellow misfortunes to hatch

Finally, the scene is a choice stemming from the poet’s personal experience, and he tells Al Jazeera Net, “Because I am not an influential element in the society or the environment in which I was thrown, I always find myself in the scene of the scenes far from making the scene, so I try to convey what can be conveyed through clips, as happened from without changing its course.

Love and women .. a last resort and may not be!

In addition to the scenes of war, asylum, loneliness, oppression and alienation that the Bedouin recites, there are scenes of love, its brokenness, its coldness, its warmth, its falsity and its honesty in a time of fragility of human relations and the weakness of the bonds that man weaves on contemporary means of communication. In one of its distortions as a last hope and recourse.

virtual girl

She sends her ceramic voice in a newspaper-wrapped recording

and pictures of the missing

She says: I love you

The room was flooded with an inch of music

I say I love you

Another knife sprouted in the distance

This is how boredom kills in the age of “media” and clean wars

This is how plastic love grows

and plastic roses


With these words, Al-Daher tries to reveal love at a distance of land through modern communication technologies, seeing it as feasible at times and plastic at other times, but what is certain is that the presence of the female was feasible as a motive for the desire to write, for the desire to resist emptiness and stillness.

Hussein says, “The female has a vast space in the soul of every poet, and it may become his only issue when the issues are missing. The presence of the female in (scenes followed by the Bedouin) was a dense and chaotic presence due to the experience of living at the time.”

poetic necessity

Many Arab poets today fear for the poeticity of their poems from the vocabulary of the digital world, but Al-Daher found in that employment a necessity:

I sneak into your photos

When you swallow the whale

Messenger green moon next to your name

Listen to the stories of your dress

haunted by myths

In addition to this poem, there are many poems in which Al-Daher resorted to employing the vocabulary of this world, and about this, he says, “In the recent period, social media in particular and the digital world in general have formed a reality parallel to our real reality, and we may spend more times in this virtual reality than in this virtual reality than We spend in our daily lives with real people, and it is likely that the influence of the parallel reality was not limited to literature and the methods of its dissemination, but went into the depth to dig into the trunk of literary genres, to be present within the poem, the novel and the story, but in my opinion, I consider it a poetic need.

It is worth noting that the poet Hussein Al-Daher has a previous collection published by Mosaique for Studies and Publishing, which is “Water… Fit for Killing”.

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