~*~ This is the Recording I made Live at a Reading in 2010. I invite you to listen as it was written to be performed to music. RECORDING of “IN THE WINDOW“
In The Window (for umahmad)
…and there I am again, standing in the window while you walk away. You glide along the pavement, smooth, a tide rolling out to sea, but how you forgot to tell me, that this was goodbye and all that I had treasured and lived in these past years, was just a lie. You forgot to prepare my heart, and you never set my table for your plate of loss, bitter, tasteless and endless day after day. I ate the same thing over and over, and every meal I felt your missing, until I lost all hunger, lost my joy, lost my reason, watching you walk away the day… the day you forgot to say goodbye.
Years went by, and how many sighs, how many tears? The perfume left the flowers, the breeze stopped carrying memories. All that was left to do in this life, now disarmed, was to lay on the ground and write my poetry; but no words can paint the desperate deepness of the wounds that were made that day you walked away, and said, “I will be back soon.”
I watched the solid tracks, derailed in an upheaval, an earthquake, truth turned upside down until it looked like a lie. Oh my other self, how could you walk down that street, and look back at me waving to you and not feel, right then, what you must have known I was about to feel?! Oh my mated soul how could you not know my pain, to watch you disappearing slowly around a bend, dissolving out of view…..?!
Tears never did clean the sense of being thrown back alone to the growls and drawn drapes of the upstairs bedroom. Poems strewn out over years… papers blowing in the air of my unanswered prayers… Oh my unique, my one, why did you go this way?! What voice did you hear that drowned out my lover’s call? Calling out over the peeling garden wall, now running to the gate, begging you to return and stay, before it was too late…
All has past and all has changed and part of you returned one day, but part of you, never found its way back home… The one who loved my laugh, my poor Arabic, and my hand in hers as we promenaded the streets, fresh bread in our bags…. That one never returned!
Oh! Where did she go? the dancer on the rooftops, with her audience of one, cross-legged, sipping tea realizing; she had become a part of me. Why did you leave me this way? Standing in an open window, children playing below me in the streets, imagining what it would feel if you didn’t return, knowing somehow, this was already happening. I waved to you; you looked back and you knew what I had yet to know, your path would not cross mine again for an endless but endless time. Where are the sounds to put down what was unuttered? Maybe only the music can play this scene in the way it must be played,lamenting from the inside out of each string,of each deep note, of each vocal plea… No curtains in the window anyway, wide open as I was, and if I would have asked you before you slipped away, could you have changed our fate and stayed? Do you know how many times I saw it this way? by changing just one day.. my life your life and all those caught in our weave, would have had so much less to grieve?
In the window, my eyes follow the part of me I loved the best, the soulmate of my reborn days, healer of my pain, sharer of my beauty, you habibiti, the soul mated to me, the gift that must never be returned, the gift that pulled at me until I reached out to touch the frosted pane, Looking through the glass at winter rains, spring green glow, dust and sand of summer storms, year after year, searching for that reverse vision, footsteps in my direction, the never ending hope you might return, in the same way that you left… but nothing in our life’s album stays the same, pictures on every page shift and change. At some point, we must close the window, turn ourselves around…. and walk away.
Karima Hoisan Written in 2005 Jordan Recorded in 2010 SL