Hinterlands

The girl, Hawa, had been lying there for a few hours. Her eyes calculatingly followed the shape of the overbearing yellow and orange cliff face to her right, that hung over the blinding Indian ocean, like a precariously leaning suicidal figure.

61 Suleman Hersi - Untitled image

.خَلَقَ الْإِنسَانَ مِن صَلْصَالٍ كَالْفَخَّارِ

.وَخَلَقَ الْجَانَّ مِن مَّارِجٍ مِّن نَّارٍ

 

He created man from sounding clay like unto pottery.

And He created jinn from smokeless flames of fire.

                                            – The Holy Quran, 55:14-15

Qoraxle Beach, Berbera, Former British Somaliland
August 1991
The Present

In the searing heat of midday, a child lay hiding on the beach amongst the stench of her tribesmen’s bodies.

Qoraxle, a small port town in Berbera, was enshrouded by mountains, sea, sun and as far as the rest of Africa was concerned, a civil war. The villagers slept through the afternoon heat, yet the unifying call to prayer for Asr would resonate throughout the divided country and across the ocean soon. The red sullied sand of the beach spread in a curve until it dissipated into a far blur. There seemed to be no horizon, to the point where one could not discern where the empty sky and monotone sea met. The girl, Hawa, had been lying there for a few hours. Her eyes calculatingly followed the shape of the overbearing yellow and orange cliff face to her right, that hung over the blinding Indian ocean, like a precariously leaning suicidal figure.

The beach was eerily quiet.

A part of Hawa tore herself off the ground and stood up. She would rather jump off that cliff, than lie there waiting to be killed.

Her black hair was knotted with despair and sleeplessness, glowing a bronze and henna red in the relentless Somali sun. She wore a shiid coloured by age and blood, and a garabsaar that hung in cascading lines of orange off her hollow collarbone and jutting shoulders, far more animate in the wind than the sunset painted sea. She put her hands together in prayer, bringing her little henna tainted fingertips to her face, her nails clogged black with dirt and blood. There was a design of a small circle with little triangles dotting the circumference, printed on both her palms. An emblem of the sun, and the seal of her tribe.

Her desperate prayer was interrupted as somewhere in the distance she heard the crack of several AK47s. They had finally found her.

Qoraxle Hinterlands, Berbera, Former British Somaliland
August 1991
A Few Hours Ago

Hawa was lost in the mountains. She trudged aimlessly as she waited for the opaque sky and shadowy sea to give way to dawn break. As the shepherdess of her family, she usually left Qoraxle before dawn to take the sheep to graze in the mountains of the hinterlands. Yet something had gone precariously wrong, and despite the feeling of foreboding, she had continued down a path she had not taken before. Sleep weighing her down, she’d dozed off under a sparse tree as the sheep grazed. She had jolted awake as she became aware of an imminent eerie, permeating feeling casting over her like dark clouds suddenly rolling in and over themselves on an empty sky. Her limbs responded slowly at first, as if unwilling, and then she bolted up, seeing the sheep were gone.

She had felt a convulsive chill run through her and turned to see three red lines of henna engraved on the trunk of the tree. The marking of the Jinn. Everyone knew Jinn resided in the Qoraxle mountains. In her hasty escape, and simultaneous search for the sheep her family entrusted her with, she had also become lost herself.

Now Hawa wandered aimlessly, looking for Qoraxle. When the sun lit enough of the world around her, she decided to search for the nearest village. After a few hours walking inland she was surprised that she did not tire or grow thirsty. Hawa found the remnants of an abandoned nomad camp with three bul. It was as if the whole place was trapped in limbo.

Hawa, unsettled, was speeding through the campsite when she heard the crackle of a radio, playing eerily to no audience in particular. “-Qoraxle village has been bombed this morning by the regime. The hospital was the first to be targeted and reinforcements are too far away to arrive on time! Everybo-”

Before Hawa could even register a feeling of immense dread for what was happening to her town, the momentary palpable silence was disrupted by a sudden shaking of the earth in rippling waves that threw her into a sudden panic. It was a grenade, and close by. The abandoned camp was being targeted. The second blast uprooted the bul itself and Hawa could not even muster a scream before she was sent scattering like the gritty sand. Before the ringing subsided in her ears she saw two huge grimy vehicles roll up through the swirling smoke and dust. They came to a jolting stop so close to her little sprawled body Hawa felt they would run her over. There was a moment’s silence as the jeep and a large truck stopped, and Hawa dashed into the nearest bul, under cover of the flying dust.

She heard the car door open and dipped back behind the yellow cloth covering the mouth of the bul as what she assumed to be the leader barked an order. She supposed having found nothing, the men scuttled back into their vehicles. They started the engines again ready to speed on.

Hawa knew she would never make it to Qoraxle on foot, so she sprinted after the truck, leapt up, fingers clutching perilously at the edge, then leapt inside. She crept and crouched, hidden amongst the guns, bullets and munitions, under a hot plastic tarp. Hawa vowed she’d escape the second the truck paused.

Just as Hawa though the journey was never-ending, she peeped out of the tarpaulin to see they had stopped at Qoraxle Port, her home. Yet the bustling town port had been reduced to silence and was devoid of any human presence. The truck rolled up to the beach where it stopped. This was Hawa’s chance to escape. Flinging the tarpaulin over her head, she bolted out.

But not before she was spotted.

Qoraxle Beach, Berbera, Former British Somaliland
The Present

The sparse yet peppered sound of gunfire chased her. It came closer and closer, the silence punctuated by her own erratic heartbeat. All Hawa could hear was her own haggard breathing. There was nowhere to hide on the clear beach except amongst the dead bodies, so she plastered herself to the side of someone who could have been her uncle. She could taste the sweat, salt and soullessness emanating from his body, and although it made her gag, the idea of rotting along with the rest of these bodies murdered angered her more. Somewhere overhead, the manic shouts of one of the soldiers came closer and the stuttering of the gun became increasingly unstable, interrupted by bursts of noises escaping his mouth. Bile swirling in her stomach, she peeped over the corpse.

He made his way towards her.

Hawa prayed she had not been spotted and tried her best to play dead. The soldier gripped the previously aimless gun and held it with a new purpose. The guttural noises were within earshot, but combined with the garbled tone of his tribal dialect, Hawa could not discern what he was saying. The soldier’s eyes were too big for his head, in a way Hawa found scary and were darting around so fast his feet stumbled into the dead.

“Come out, child! There’s no fun in hiding amongst the dead when you’re still living.”

Hawa began shaking as if she was possessed.

The man had his back to Hawa and tripped over the body she was hiding behind, crashing into her. Desperate, she crawled out from under him and over stricken faces. Although she tried to avoid them, her fingers found grip in gaping gazes, mouths and wounds. She was expecting a bullet to embed itself in her small frame by the fifth body, but instead the soldier let loose another burst from his AK47 at an enemy that was not Hawa. She dived to the ground and saw that he had not, or could not see her.

The soldier ploughed on through the dead as Hawa was left behind, unnoticed and alive. Shaking uncontrollably now, Hawa felt the essence of her being flaring up. He was only a few metres away. Something had forced her to stagger up, blinking sand and dust from her eyes. From behind, he felt Hawa’s uncanny gaze fixated on him, burning the back of his head and boring into him hotter than the noon heat of the sun. He turned his head over his shoulder slowly, to meet eyes with what he had not seen earlier. His face contorted into an expression of genuine terror. He was not seeing her, but something else, something not yet diabolical. Screeching, he abandoned his gun, stumbling over the bodies and the phrase: “Jinn! Jinn!”

He ran back the way he came to the group of soldiers he had wandered from, repeating jinn until his voice went hoarse and out of earshot.

Hawa felt a sudden sense of relief, and felt some control over her limbs again. She did not know what had made her stand up so abruptly. She wondered why the soldier had thought that she was a jinn. Yet as she thought this, with a surmounting feeling of terror, she heard loud voices approaching. It was the hysterical soldier, with many chiding voices following, as he swore he had seen a possessed child on the beach.

Hawa could not outrun them. She let a sigh out into the wind and turned her face to the sun, her eyes closed, fingertips to her lips, hands cupped in prayer. She rubbed her face with a weariness far beyond her years and opened her eyes, bright spots of white light fluctuated before her. She realised what needed to be done, and no longer worried. Instead she thrust her orange garabsaar over her bony shoulder and looked to the precarious cliff from earlier.

It jutted out at an inviting angle.

Hawa was known as a fiery child, because of her henna-ember dyed hair and ambitious, independent attitude. And this time, she was determined to put out the flame of her soul in the bottom of the ocean before any enemy tribe or rogue militia would put a bullet through her temple. Taking matters into her own hands, Hawa’s small bare feet left behind red ribbons of blood as she made her way steadily to the top, her toes curling over the edge of the sharp cliff.

In uncensored ugliness, she saw now below a spectacular display of bodies. They were plagued by the militia, who were slowly making their way across the dumped bodies searching for her. They had AK47s on their backs, with cartridge belts strapped around their bodies. They rifled through the contents of their enemies’ pockets, stealing inflated money, false identification, imported watches and personal photographs of beloved family members. Hawa could not bring herself to be angry anymore. Resigned, she stood up and gathered her shiid in her fists instead.

In a local masjid a few kilometres down the beach the muezzin performed the third call to prayer for Asr, a holy and pure melody that echoed down the beach and reverberated through the blasphemous bodies of those both butchered and breathing, so that every man and woman, rich or poor, from the tribes of the Hawiye, Isaaq or Darood would wash their sins away with ritual ablution and lay their foreheads to the ground as one to ask Allah for forgiveness. The call continued:

“. . .  الفلاح حي على. حي على الصلاة

Hasten to prayer. Hasten to success . . .

The murderers below ignored and drowned it out with their own pillaging sound of sacrilegious success. Hawa looked down in disgust as one of the men below ripped apart the front of a mother’s shiid and prised something from around her neck. Hecelebrated by thrusting the glinting object up to the sky and the men around him congratulated him, slapping him in the back with a friendly nudge of their guns.

Hawa cried then, first because she felt she was the only human there that day, and secondly because she would also be the last. She felt the wind curl its long, slender and pointed fingers around her shiid, and flung her across the open space, out to the sea far enough so that when she washed ashore, her soul would have long departed from her. She imagined she fell with the grace and suppleness of angels, ready and accepting, and wished to be obliterated into nothingness in the water below.

As she crashed through the surface, the water clawed its way down her throat and settled in the cave of her lungs like a beast returning home. But she found herself not drowning, and instead she felt her body and garments slowly floating back up to the surface, despite her desperate attempt to sink lower. She thrashed and kicked so that the sea sucked her soul to the bottom, she breathed in so deeply she imagined she’d vacuumed the whole ocean into her little lungs, but her fiery attempt was put out by the force of the sea.

No matter what chance to embrace death came her way, it seemed she would not die.

Hawa did not know for how long she was underwater but she finally glided to the top, and her face broke the surface. Before she could notice the passage of time in the sky, she breathed the despised air, the heavy velvety blackness of the sky dotted with glittering sequences cast a revenant glow on her wide forehead and cheekbones. Hawa felt the cool air on her burning face and as she lay on undulating waves, she wondered why she was still alive, and could not help thinking that something had indeed been preventing her from dying.


Suleman Hersi (Photographer) is a 27 year old civil engineering student, who holds a BS in engineering. He has always enjoyed being creative, and has tried his hand at various art forms including poetry, short stories, rapping, and beat-boxing. Photography is a medium he returns to regularly. From 2013 to 2016, Suleman simply used his smartphone to capture images; by 2017 he found freelance photography work. His dream is to work as a concert photographer, as he enjoys the show energy and atmosphere. Suleman will travel to Somalia next year for photojournalism. He resides in Asker, Norway.

Instagram: @ihersi
Website: www.ihersi.com

Asma Ismail (Author) is 23 years old and lives in Birmingham, England. She works as an English teaching assistant in a secondary school. After completing her English and Creative Writing degree, she still hasn’t let go of her storytelling roots, and appreciates opportunities where she can share creative work that holds true to her culture and identity as a Somali.

الحلم الجميل

I'm Melting

لقد حلمت حلما جميلا وناقصا ، رأيتني دخلت الجنة مع أناس آخرين لم أكن أعرفهم في الدنيا ، كان بعضهم في قبور مجاورة لقبري ، تلاقت أعيننا فور أن قذفنا من حفرنا ، جميعنا تعانقنا ؛ فقد كنا نلتقي لأول مرة منذ ان تجاورت بيوتنا ، كنت أسمع احيانا ضحكاتهم وأحيانا اخرى صوت جمجمة بعضهم وهي تتكسر كالزجاج .

حوسبنا و نجانا الله ، ثم بدأنا نلتمس طريقنا إلى الجنة ،وفي الطريق لم أكن أركض بسرعة البرق و لم أركب حصانا طائرا مثل كثير ممن مروا فوقنا .

وبالرغم من أن سيئاتي لم تكن كثيرة ، وحتى بعد أن فشل جلدي وأصابعي في توريطي ؛ إلا أن حسناتي ذهبت مع آخرين ادعوا أنني غبتهم ؛ لهذا فقد توجب علي المشي مع أصدقائي الذين كان نصفهم يزحف على بطنه ، كنا عراة ، وكان الرجال يختلسون النظر إلينا ولا يتورعون عن التحرش بمن تصل أيديهم ، هكذا هم دائما .

لا يوجد رجل حي يفوت على نفسه فرصة النظر إلى امرأة عارية حتى ولو كانت في أرض المحشر .

أما نحن النساء فكانت عيوننا معلقة بالأعلى ننتظر توصيلة من أحد الطائرين ، كما عهدوا علينا في الدنيا ننتظر التوصيلات .

واحدة منا فقط حصلت عليها .

كنا حفاة ، والدم بسيل أنهارا من أقدمنا ، لم تكن هناك سماء أو أرض ؛ فقد طويت كطي السجل للكتب ،

هل يمكنك تصور ذلك ؟!

بقيت فقط الجنة والنار والطريق الذي بينهما ، اذهاننا اختلت ، وأفرغت من كل التصورات ، أو الذكريات ، الشيء الوحيد الذي بقي من أيام الزمن الجميل كانت هيئاتنا البشرية .

فقدنا صديقين في ذلك الطريق الحاد والمستقيم جدا ، وأيضا صديق آخر علق في منطقة تسمى باﻷعراف ، أخبرنا أنه قاتل مع طارق بن زياد في إحدى معاركه بدون إذن والدته.

لم أكن لأفضل رفقة رجل جاهد مع ابن زياد وبدون إذن من والدته !

وأخيرا وصلنا أبواب الجنة ، تنفسنا الصعداء جميعا عندما رأينا جناحا رضوان الخضراء .

كنا آخر سبعة دخلوا إلى الجنة ، و بعد أن اغتسلنا في نهر الحياة ، تغيرت أشكالنا ، وصار لوننا نحن الفتيات الأربعة خلاصة كل الألوان مجتمعة في أجسادنا المصنوعة من الكريستال ، سألنا الملك المشرف على ترفيهنا ما إذا كنا نرغب بلقاء ربنا ، واحدة منا أرادت ذلك ، وأخرى طلبت الإجتماع مع أهلها ، في هذه الأثناء صديقنا المتحرش اندس في بحيرة كانت تغتسل فيها حور لإحدى الصالحات ، وبدأ عمله فورا ، ابتسم له الملك وأخبره أن له سبعون يشبهن مثلهن .

فعلة صديقي تحمل في الجنة اسما آخر ، وبالتالي فهي لا تعتبر جربمة ؛ لأن الحور لم تخلق إلا لمتعة الرجال من اهل الجنة ، وأيضا نساء الدنيا ادخلن فقط لهذا الغرض .

الأربعة الباقون قرروا الإحتفال ، جاءتنا سرر مرفوعة تطفو كالسفنة على السطح ، حملتنا إلى خيمة واسعة ، وجميلة ، هذا كل ما يمكنني القول عنها ، كنت فاتنة وأنا متكئة على ذاك السرير ، أتتنا طاولات لا نهاية لها مليئة بفواكه تتلألأ وتأتي إليك بنفسها ، وشربنا حتى الثمالة بأكواب موضوعة .

احتفالنا استمر لمدة خمسين سنة .

كانت الجنة تعج بالنساء على عكس ما توقعت ؛ فكل رجل كانت له أكثر من خمسين امرأة ، وهكذا فالنساء كن أضعافا مضاعفة بالنسبة للرجال .

بعد قرن من الزمن كنت أعيش فيها عيشة رغيدة وضجرة ،

وكنت اتمنى لو علقت مع المجاهد ، أو أن لا بنفتح قبري خطأ وأبقى منطوية مع الأرض إلى الأبد ، حينها جاء أحد صديقاي من النار بعد أن عفى الله عنه وأدخله في فسيح جناته ، ويبدو أنه – مثلي – مل من النساء والرجال إلى آخر تلك المياعة قال لي “وهل أنا طفل رضيع كي أشرب تلك الكمية من اللبن كل يوم” ثم أخبرني عن جهنم ، كانت مليئة بالأحداث المثيرة ، تحالف نابليون مع استالين ويصارعون في حكم سقرة حلفا آخر مكونا من الفايكنغ برئاسة هتلر ومعه أبوجهل ونتنياهو المتعاركان بدورهم ،[حدث في النار أن تحالف هتلر مع الساميين ] وقال أن سقرة يحكمها حلف نابليون .

بعض من شياطين الإنس انقلبوا على حراس زمهريرة ، ويخوضون حروبا ضارية ضد مالك .

اسكندر الأكبر أمر جميع العلماء الذين كانوا فيها – وفي الحقيقة كلهم موجودون هناك – أن يقوموا باختراع سلاح يمكنه من الإستيلاء على النار ومن بعدها الجنة وربما على العرش وإبليس يقدم مشوراته كالعادة.

الطموحون في الدنيا طموحون في الآخرة .

وودي آلان يخرج فيلما كوميديا عن أهل الجنة ويعرض في سينما [الحطمة ] المزدهر ، في الدرك الخامس بعد أن يتم شي المشاهدين وتبديل جلودهم .

كتيبة من الملائكة حضرت الفيلم .

الحكماء والفلاسفة يجزمون أنهم في الجنة وأن النار تقع في الجانب الآخر .

شكسبير يكتب نهاية سعيدة لروميو وجولييت ، وكل العشاق اجتمعوا معا .

أنا وصديقي عرفنا أننا جزء من تلك الأحداث وأننا لا ننتمى إلى الجنة ، دلتنا الأفعى وقطفنا تفاحة ، فلما ذقنا الشجرة بدت لنا سوءاتنا وقيل لنا اهبطوا بعضكم لبعض عدو ، ولكم في الأرض مستقر ومتاع إلى حين ، وأصبحنا آدم وحواء المطرودين من الأعلى .

صحوت وأنا أنتظر بفارغ صبر [ذلك الحين ].


Marinna Shareef (Artist) is a 20 year old Trinidadian multidisciplinary artist who specialises in manipulating both digital and physical media to portray her everyday feelings. She is inspired by the magnitude and mystery of her emotions that she experiences as someone who deals with bipolar disorder, using visual imagery to organize her thoughts into a way that she can better understand.

I’m Melting
Mixed Media collage on greyboard.
This piece depicts how a depressive episode feels when I’m fighting the urge to give up.

Instagram: @mahrinnart
YouTube: MarinnaS

Saloomi (Author) graduated from Hargeisa University, and writes in both Arabic and Somali. Saloomi resides in Hargeisa.

Dhambaal Ka Socda Jilka Dhalan Doona

47 - Nujum Ahmed Hashi for Khaled M. Saed

“Hadallo ka soo baxaya af aan wali dilaacin, fikiro dhex mushaaxaya maskax aan wali amabaqaadin, indho aan wali ifka u soo bixin, jidh aan dareemin milica cadceeda, san aan wali carfin udduga ubaxa, Haddana qaabaynaya nolosha uu ku noolaan lahaa.”

Laga yaabaa in la idiin kala sheekeeyay, laga yaabaa in aad ku kortay deegaan ku xardhan midabyo kala duwan, laga yaabaa in aad qol madow ugu jirto beelaysi aan macno ku fadhiyin, laga yaabaa inaad fikirkaaga iyo cududaada siisay siyaasi aan dantiisa moogayn, laga yaabaa in aanad wali u soo if bixin quruxda dabiiciga ah ee adduunka, laga yaabaa in aanad wali indho dilaacsan oo fikirka tolmoon aad ka arag la’dahay, laga yaabaa in aad ka hayaantay dhulkaagii Hooyo, laga yaabaa in aad ka nixisay hooyo u heelanayd horumarkaaga, laga yaabaa in aad ka farxisay danayste aan dan kaa lahayn, laga yaabaa in aad musuqmaasuq ka carartay, laga yaabaa in aad cadaalad darro ka cadhootay, laga yaabaa inaad u fikiri wayday si togan, laga yaabaa inaad isleedahay ii hiili, laga yaabaa in lagu jiho wareeriyay ood kala garan wayday jiho aad u socoto, laga yaabaa in hore aan looga fikirin aayahaaga danbe, laga yaabaa in aad walaalkaa u damqan wayday, laga yaabaa in aad ka wayday garabkaad ku lahayd, laga yaabaa inaad ku gubatay dab shisheeye dhigay, laga yaabaa in aad ii garaabi waydo.

balse hadaladan aan ku hadlayaa waa hadalo ka soo baxaya af aan wali dilaacin, fikiro dhex mushaaxaya maskax aan wali amabaqaadin, indho aan wali ifka u soo bixin, jidh aan dareemin milica cadceeda, san aan wali carfin udduga ubaxa, Haddana qaabaynaya nolosha uu ku noolaan lahaa, ka digtoon hagardaamooyinkii aad la kulantay, raba in uu qayrkii la tartamo raba in uu walaalkii jeclaado, raba in uu ku noolaado milgo iyo sharaf, raba in uu calankiisa kor u qaado, adduunku waa hadhkaa labadiisa galine shalay haddaad ku madhatay badaha waawayn maalin anigaa ku noolaan doona nolol aanad waxba iiga tagin. Aniga oo gacmaha is haysta aniga oo is jecel kuna midaysan fikrado bilaa turxaan ah. Aniga ayaa la dood dhigan doona caalamka intiisa kale, aniga ayaa la babac dhiganaya qayrkay.

Adiga kaagama baahni in aad i waaniso waayo waan ogahay xaalka aad ku sugantahay iyo taloda aad ka dhaxashay kuwii kaa horeyeeyay in ay midho dhal noqon wayday balse anigu safxad cusub oo nolosha ah ayaan bilaabanaya aniga ku bilaabi doona jacayl.

Waxaan arkaa saadaal wacan yididiilo cusub iyo qorax cusub oo ii dhalan doonta, farxad iyo jacayl u dhaxayn doona ummad iyo deegaankeed, Hooyo iyo ilmaheed, cadaalad ka soo if bixi doonta deegaan kharibnaa balse dhiig cusub lagu shubay. Waxaan noqon doonnaa tamar iyo awood cusub, cudud midaysan iyo nolol ii qalanta. Adiga waxaan kugula tallin lahaa in aanad is idhiibin ilaa aan ka imanayo in yar baa ka hadhee Hinji!


Nujum Ahmed Hashi (Artist) was born in Mogadishu, Somalia and raised there. She found herself interested in art at seven years of age, and used to draw on walls, in sand, and in her school books. On her way home from madrassa she often felt pressured from her older sister and school teachers; art became her skipping point to disconnect from her surroundings. That was the beginning of her journey to art.

Twitter@Nujumarts
Facebook: Nujuum.A.Hashi
Email: Nujuumhashi@gmail.com

Khaled M. Said (Author) is a young writer. He blogs at Khaloudym and has been published in WAAHEEN newspaper, among other local newspapers and websites. In 2016, Khaled worked for Jalada Pan-African Writers, based in Nairobi, where he contributed Somali translations to Africa’s most translated historical written works, including a Sanaa Theatre award-winner (2016) in the category of Best Play in Local Language.

Khaled graduated from the University of Hargeisa’s Department of Biomedical Science. He has a YouTube-based TV show called Xogmaal, He is an active member of the Saylici Festival Team, an annual festival of Somali traditional folklore dance in Hargeisa. Khaled is currently working with ILMO Aqoon publisher where he is a Chief Editor of children’s books.

Twitter: khaalid.said

! الرومانسية الشرعية

دعني أعرفك عليها ؛ فأنا لدي تجربة ممتازة.

كانت لدي صديقة نسميها (الشبكة) ؛ لأن الشباب كانوا يصطادون الفتيايات بها ، هي التي عرفتني على المدعو بأبو القعاع محمد بن محمود الملقب بأسد اﻹسلام .

63 Amani _ Safa

دعني أعرفك عليها ؛ فأنا لدي تجربة ممتازة.

كانت لدي صديقة نسميها (الشبكة) ؛ لأن الشباب كانوا يصطادون الفتيايات بها ، هي التي عرفتني على المدعو بأبو القعاع محمد بن محمود الملقب بأسد اﻹسلام .

كان رجلا ضخم الجثة ، يملك شعرا طويلا وعينان عسليتان ، ووجه صغير مقارنة بجسمه ، يصر على موقفه ولو كان تافها.

التقينا بمنزل الشبكة ، و جلست في أقرب مقعد إلى الباب .

إذا كنت في غرفة مع رجل ضخم ، فأنصحك أن تجلسي بالقرب من الباب .

نفذت كل ما قالتة لي شبكة ، ثبت عيني على الأرض ، ووضعت يدي على فمي ، كما يجب على الفتاة أن تفعل عند اللقاء اﻷول ، مع أنني لم أكن أشعر بالخجل ، كنت حذرة وكنت أرغب أن أنظر إليه من عينيه ، وأقرأ ملامح وجهه الصغير وانفعالاته ، وأعرف إن كانت لديه عيوب خلقية خاصة إن كان يملك مشية بطريق ، فهذا أسوء شيء قد يحدث للفتاة في أول موعدها الغرامي ، ولكنني فضلت نصيحة شبكة فهي أدرى مني بتلك الأمور .

صاحبي جلس في قبالتي ، وبعد السلام تحدث عن محاضرة سرمدية عن مشروعية وأهمية الزواج وفضله ، ثم أخرج من جيبة ورقة طويلة ، وبدأ يقرأ قائمة من الشروط والطلبات واﻷوامر التي تبدأ كلها بعبارة [ كوني] وأنا كنت أستمع بوقار شديد ، وأحدق في رجلي .

وفد صادف أنني أنا وهو ندرس المساء كتب الأمهات السبع من الشيخ درر في مسجده ، وهذا كان بالنسبة لنا أمرا في قمة الرومانسية .

كان يملك ابتسامة جميلة ، لم يكن يمشي كالبطريق ، كان يحضر لي شيكولاتتي المفضلة كل مساء ، ويقول “خذي يا أم قعقاع ، وأسأل الله أن لا تسمني ” فآخذها بإصبعين ونعود إلى المسجد وكلانا لا يقوى على النظر في عيون اﻵخر ، وفي المقابل أكتب له رسائل أقول فيها ما لم أستطع قولها له في التيلفون .

كنت أوقظه لصلاة الليل ، ويؤمني من المايكرفون ، ثم نسبح لله ما في السماوات ونقرأ وردنا من القرآن ونتسابق عليه ، وبعدها نتحدث عن أحلامنا وأولادنا ، وحياتنا التي تضحك لنا .

لقد وعدني بأنه سيشرب من حيث شربت .

الرسول قدوتنا ، والحياة الرومانسية لا تخلو من التسباق .

وعندما كنا نلتقي في بيت شبكة ، كنت ألبس حجابي الوردي ، قال لي مرة أنه يليق بي ..

لا أدري ولا يهمنا اﻵن نهاية تلك الهرجة ، ولكنني رغبت في الحديث عن الرومانسية الشرعية فقط و لا أدعو إليها .

بحق اﻷرض والسماء إنها إهانة .


This above work is part of a collaboration between:

Amani M.
Instagram: @4nine2 
Website: www.4nine2.com
&
Safa M., professional photographer based in Vancouver, BC.

 

Saloomi (Author) graduated from Hargeisa University, and writes in both Arabic and Somali. Saloomi resides in Hargeisa.

Dibba u Murmi Mayno

Aar na dhagayso oo waa dambiye. Maadaama aanu qofku iskii u dambaabin, miyaanay cadayn marka uu dambaabayo in shookaanta loo hayo?

53 Ikram Ahmed - Untitled Image 2

Axmed, Cali iyo Xamse. Marka la shaahayo wax laga doodo lama waayo.

Kabihii inta uu baalashaystay ayay labadoodiiba Axmed soo raaceen. Maqaaxi kuraastu cuslaysay, dadkuna kuraasta cusleeyeen ayay meel gees ah, saddex kursi u la baxeen. Labaduba inta ay dhanka wadada u jeesteen ayuu Axmed na ka soo horjeestay. Isagu badanaa wadada dhabarka ayuu u jeediyaa. Dhawr jeerna saaxiibadii waxa uu kula taliyay in ay iyaguna ka jeestaan. Laakiin rag dhagaystaba ma yihiin. “Waar naga hor kac niyaw aanu indhaha magaalada u qaybinnee.” Ma iyagaaba boodhka gawaadhida soo doonan lahaa, haddii aanay dan kale u socon.

Inta uu kabbo shaah ah dhuunta mariyay, ayuu cod la wada maqlayo ku yidhi “Acuudubilaah… Waar qoftaa na dambaajisay maxay ahayd, Xamse.” Waligood laba erey isku waafaqay ma aha e, waa kaa jikaar ku bilaabay. “Jaw, marka aad labada indhood inantii dariiqa soo martaba ka dhex saarto ayaad waxaa ku andacootaa. Waa midhkaan kugu dhaamo. Kolay waan kaa dambi yarahay.” Muran qadhaadh baa ka dhex bilaabmay, Axmed na waa isku daawaday. “Oo indhahayaga saw iyadu ma soo doonan, Shaahayagaasaannu iska fiiqsanaynaye.”  “Alla indho adakidaa niyaw, maad iska qiratid sidayda. Hadhowna hoosta ka astaaqfuralaysatid.” Mar dambe ayuu Xamse dhankii Axmed u soo jeestay. “Waar Axmed, xagga diinta adaa nagaga wanaagsane, dee ninkan wax u sheeg.”

“Ar kan naga daa niyaw, iminkuu khudbaddii jimcaha noo soo qadimayaaye.” Cali baa la soo booday. “Ar khudbadda wa…. Ar ninka dhagayso niyaw.”

Axmed iyo Cali baa loo kala baxay, Xamsena maqalka ayuu ugu deeqay.

Horta marka hore qofku iskii dambi ugu ma dhaco. Ileen waa dambiye. Miyaanay dambi ahayn. “Ar dambina ma aha e, ishu baalashka waa isaga baahan tahaye!” Aar na dhagayso oo waa dambiye. Maadaama aanu qofku iskii u dambaabin, miyaanay cadayn marka uu dambaabayo in shookaanta loo hayo. Haa dheh dee. Markaa, marka aad inantaa isha ka baalashaynayso, saw iyana ma cadda in shookaanta laguu hayo. Haa dee, way cad dahay. Sawdigan marka aad il weyn cabbaar kusii eegto la soo boodaya. “Acuudu bilaahi mina shaydaani rajiim.” Intaa miyaanad iskaga eeryin marka aad aragto in uu kula fogaaday. Waar nooga deg gaadhiga oo farsamaysan weeye dee. “Waar adaaba gaadhi kale na saaraye.” Horta i dhigayso dee kuuma dhamayn e. Anigu kaligaa qaladka kuma saarayo. Ragga oo kaliyana ma abbaarayo. Hablaha laftooda qaar badan oo ka mid ah, shookaan baasta iyaba waa loo hayaa.

Waliba iyaga waxoodu shookaanba ma aha e, la taliye khaas ah ayay lee yihiin. Albaabkaa ka bax marka ay is tidhaahdo ayay kusoo xaadiraan baan is idhi, inta kale mooji. “Oo Ileen waa waxan ay la raagaan. Mid baad la balamaysaayoo saacad ka dib xiligii balanta ayay kuu imanaysaa.” Niyaw maad na dhagaysan. “Haa.” Ileen waa la taliye xariif ahe wuxu ugu soo gabogabeeyo miyaad taqaannaa. “May.” Si ay Quruxdaadu u muuqato, barta aad u qurux badan tahay uun, dadka ku walacso. Ilaahayna dee, mid ba meel buu quruxda u galiyaye ma ogtahay. “Haaye adigu maxaad ugu diidaysaa in ay habluhu quruxdooda muujiyaan.” Waar niyaw maad na dhagaysan, quruxda hablaha malaha faderaal la wada lee yahay baad u haysataaye. Marka inantaas uu quruxdeedii banaanka keenay ku soo hormariyo, dee adna waa kaa diirad qaloocda kuu saaray ee ku yidhi indhaha ayaad baalashaynaysaa! “Markaa ma intaas oo kaliya baa.” Maya walaal e, miyaanad maqal ‘wax kastaba isha ayaa macalin ah.’ “Haa.” Dee hadda waa barqo e, immisa habeen ayaad mid ku waydaaratay ka daba kacday. “Tiro ma leh.” Aan kuusii wado e, marka aad ku murantaan xumaha hablahaa u horseeda oo quraarad cadar ah inta ay isku jebiyaan suuqa lugeeya iyo Ragga ayaa indho bahal leh oo hammuun baas qaba, miyaanay u ekayn in dirawalkani inta uu baabuurtiina isku duqeeyay idinka dhex baxay. Haa dheh dee, ha yaabine. Markaa maxaad hablaha qaladka u saari, oo aad isaga reebi. “Waar kan raggaa waalan ku dooodayaa iga daran e.”

Wali ma maqashay qofkaa hebel waa lasoo riday. “Haa, anaaba arkay mid sida falaadha ridan, oo isaga oo aan dhag la qabto lahayn daf kusoo odhanaya, sidii daadkii xaabaale.” Walaal waynu wada ridan nahay hadaba. Masaa’ibtaa inna ridaysa uun aynu iska qabanno. Bes. Dibba u murmi mayno.


Ikram Ahmed (Photographer)

Instagram: @byikramnur

Abdirahman Jazeera (Author): “Waxa aan ku barbaaray magaalooyinka Burco, Berbera iyo Hargeisa. Haddana waxa aan ku noolahay magaalada Boorama. Waxa aan cilmiga shaybaadhka ka bartaa jaamacadda Camuud. Dibba u Murmi Mayno, waa sheekadii u horaysay ee aan qoro.”

Warda Means Rose

In the evening she would return home to prepare dinner for Quran saar, swift fix to the supposed jinn residing in my body. There were endless hours of sitting, encircled by sheikhs, learned men with lengthy beards, some dyed orange red and others plainly gray.

A Submission 29

The man wearing the white jacket was much older this time. He dragged a wooden chair out in front of me and sat still. White papers hung onto his clipboard, a thin pen held over his right knee.

He smiled while studying my face. On his were wrinkles at every patch of brown skin. I thought of Awoowe, his gentle smile and frail body lying across my mother’s bed. The final hours of his life shrinking him away till he could take no more breaths.

“Warda, my girl. Thank you for seeing me. Can you tell me when you last received treatment?”

His smile was gone and the kindness in his eyes evaporated. I should have known him to be another informant, greedy for my secrets. I wouldn’t share a thing this time.

He peered down at the papers, flipping back and forth between them.

“It says you were on your own for some time.” Another smile, “Kaaligatha iiyo Kariimka…”

Just you and your Most Generous God.

It had been years since I heard that last.

My Hooyo came to mind. In the afternoons she fed me. After I would watch her small silhouette behind the beige and white dotted curtain beside my bed. She would roam around the home, holding sweet incense to every corner. Last was a gentle kiss over my head as she left me alone to my thoughts.

Back then the voices were less lethal:

“Why has she left you to yourself again?”

“She won’t come back this time.”

“They’re coming to get you.”

“You’ll be dead before you know it.”

Hooyo despised my illness and blamed it on the evil eye. Other days, on the jinn.

In the evening she would return home to prepare dinner for Quran saar, swift fix to the supposed jinn residing in my body. There were endless hours of sitting, encircled by sheikhs, learned men with lengthy beards, some dyed orange red and others plainly gray.

Ayats free falling from their lips. Some voices like thunder and others soft as velvet.

“When did your mother pass?” the old man asked me from his chair.

My eyes searched the room until I found her at the back, carrying the same incense in her hands, swaying alongside the smoke. She stopped suddenly,  to stare at me.

“She’s there, just behind you.” I told him. The old man turned back around.

“Don’t you see her? Don’t you smell it?”

“Smell what?” The old man asked.

Hooyo held a finger to her lips before slipping into the hall, leaving a trail of smoke behind her. She would return again when mentioned by name.

“You just missed her.”

The old man frowned and scribbled things onto his white papers. He was displeased at her leaving.

“Don’t worry, she’ll return soon. She always does.”


FARDOSA SULEIMAN (Photographer) is nineteen years old and from San Jose, California. She began taking photographs just one year ago.

Instagram: @fvrdosa
Twitter: @fvrdosa

HALIMA HAGI-MOHAMED (Author) is a Somali-American writer. She was born in Nairobi, Kenya and raised in Fresno, California. Her writing deals with themes of family, mental health, identity, and religion. Last year she published her first book of short stories titled Amilah.

Halima’s short stories can be found at halimawrites.com
Instagram: @halimawrites

Bare Barre

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Sheeko gaaban oo mala awaal ah, nolosha dhabta ahna aan ka dheegtay.

Cabdillahi Raage “Sayyidka”

Barre waxa aad tahay bare ku takhasusay barbaarinta ubadka, dugsiga aad u shaqo tagto wuu buux-dhaafay, magac iyo sumcadna wuu ku wadhwadhay, adna waad u hagarbaxdaa waxbarista ubadka aad baraha u tahay iyo barbaarintoodaba, waalidku adi mooyee bareyaasha kale maba yaqaanaan, ubadkuna magacaaga way ku hadaaqaan dugsiga dhexdiisa iyo dibaddiisaba, magaalka markaad ubaxdo umadda ayaa kuu jeeb ah, ardaygaagii kaalinta koobaad galay sanadkii la soo dhaafay waalidkii waaka haysta maqaayadda wax laga cuno, maalinkaa ka dib lacag aad bixiso waakii kaaga dhaartay, adna hadii uu xishoodku ku dhaafin lahaa waakii ku xujeeyay ee Eebbe wayne kugu xawilay hadiiba aad garab marto, baska laftiisa waaka wada—galinka danbe, mid ardaydaada ka mid ahi, hadaanu ku qaadin oo aanu meesha aad u socoto ku hordhigin maalinkiisu  miyaabu ?!

Qiyaastii malaha baalashka oo kaliya ayaad lagactaada ka bixisaa inta aad magaalka joogto.

Adoo is moog uun, waadiga maalin ku baraarugay adoo qaylinaaya. Ileen waxaabad ku riyoonaysay tacsidaadii oo loo fadhiyo, anfariikii makuu kaa dagay riyadaasi waxa ay kugu dhalisay is weydiintii ugu cuslayd noloshaada, taas oo ahayd, hadii aad caawaba hoyato maxaa lagaa dhaxli oo lagugu xasuusan doonaa, ku darso oo ubadna Alle kuuguma deeqin adna guurba waadigii giriifey waagii Baxsan lagaa guursaday.

Todobaado wax aad tallantaba, go’aan waadiga ku gaadhay in aad magacaaga ku duugto xarun waxbarasho oo gargaar ah, ubadka danyarta ah, kuwa daranyaysan, kuwa la tuuray iyo kuwa waalidkood ka dayrshayba hoy iyo dugsi ay ka dhigtaan, waxna aad ku bartid, diintana aad ku barbaarisid, waxaanad isku qancisay in taasi tan la joogo iyo ta danbaaysaba guul kuu tahay.

Waa Eebbe mahadii, sidii lagu yiqiin meesha aad joogto wakaa ubadkii isa soo buux dhaafshay Xarunta Bare Barre ee Kobcinta Ubadka Umadda, badidooda, hooyada sii baxaysa iyo ayeeyada soo galaysa waakuwa bilaabay in ay ubadka tirintooda ku tartamaan, adna waadiga “amiiin.. Idaylkenba.. Aaamiin hooyo” da gurraaya, ducada markii lagugu qarqiyay.

Bootaan iyo Bariirada mataanaha ayuu ku waydiinayaa Bare

“La yaab ma laha…. Waligiiba waa uu ubad jeclaa… illeeyn waa nin goblan ahe…” erayada waa kuwa iswaaydaarsaday wiilka gacanyaraha kuu ah iyo gabadha soo-dhawaynta kuu qaabilsani, adigu markaas warkaa ma haysid illeeyn waa nin riyadiisi u rumawday iyo xeerkiiye, tirada ubadka, tayada waxbarasha, farxaddooda iyo ku qanacsanaanta waalidka awoodi waayay in uu hanti kala baxo waxbarista ubadkiisu waata ku qancisay. Cid kaa raynrayn badanba ma jirto dunida, tolow ma la heli cid mar uun sida aad hada u faraxsanatahay u faraxday inta uu aadamuhu aduunkan jogo, maalina Eebbe ha ka yeelee?! Intaad weeydiintaa is weeydiisay waadiga is kugu warceliyay, Maya…! adoo indhaha la raacraacaaya wiilka iyo gabadha mataanaha ah oo cayaar ku mashquulsan.

Haweenku indho fiiqfiiqanaa oo fiirfiirsi badanaa, gabadhii kula shaqaaynaaysay oo baryahanba madaxeega ay weeydiimo ka guuxayeen, waata yarkii shaqaalaha ahaa waydiisay,

“Bare Barre caruurtaa mataanaha ah muxuu si gooni ah ugu xanaaneeyaa?!”

Garan maayo, maxaad ku keentay waydiintaas?! Markuu ugu jawaab celiyay waata intay kursi halkaa ka soo jeeda fadhiisatay ku tidhi.

“U fiirso marwalba oo uu ubadka dhex fadhiyo labadooda dhabta ayuu ku qabtaa, aroortii isagaa kala wareega ayeeydood, galinka danbana gacatiisa ayuu ugu geeyaa.”

Yaa… indho dheeridaa, umaaban fiirsane, maxaa kaleed ku aragtay?!

Waar adna waad iska nooshahay uun, labadaas mataanood hadii ay oyaan miyaanad arag in uu gariiro, waxaaban ka baqaa marka ay ilmeeyaan in uu isagna oohin ku daro.

Haye… waa yaabe!!

Waar xataa hadii ay is wasakheeyaan ilaa aan u nadiifiyo igama dul tago.

Naa dee  Barre waa nin ubad jecel, ma maantaad baranaysaa?!

Anigu waxaan arkay ubad jacayl ka badan!

Intaa markii ay is waydaarsadeen, waadiga si lama filaan ah ugu soo baxay ee waydiiyay waxa ay la murmaayeen. yaarkii waa ka isku dayay in uu sheekada ku dhaafiyo, lakiin kamaad yeeline, waadiga ku adkaysatay in lagaa qayb galiyo doodda, “dhaliyaro ayaan anba ahay oo wali maan odayyoobin ha igala xishoonina hadalka” waadiga hadalkii ugu daray.

Inta uu dhiiraday waaka yarkii ku waydiiyay “Mataanahaas yaryar waxaan aragnaa adigoo naas-nuujinayee maxay kaaga duwanyihiin ubadka kale?” “aaaah, maad iska aamustid” waadiga ku calaacalay gudahaaga adoon maqashiinayn, illeeyn markiiba waxaa ku horyimid sawirkeedii, sheekadeedii, qosolkeedii, farxadeedii. Dhagtaadu waata iska maqashay codkeedii halaasiga ahaa oo ku leh “gacaliye ragba waa igu kaligaa”, meel ay ka timidba mooye waadiga dareemay iyadoo dhexda ku haysta, dhunkasho kaa laba celinaysa, iyadoo qoslaysa oo kolba su’aal ku weeydiinaysa waadiga xasuustay, qudhiiba waaka ku hor yimid habeenkii uu labiskeedu ku sixray, cadarkeeduna ku jaanjaamiyay ee aad buurta ku laydhsanayseen, magaaladuna hoostiina si qurxoon uga soo muuqanaaysay, xasuus badanayaa habeenkaasi iyadna qurxoonaydaa!, waatiii ku waydiisay “hadii aan wiil aan ku curano maxaad u bixin?” adna wadigii gabadh hadii ad ku curataan waydiiyay waxa ay u bixin lahayd? dood dheer ka dib waydinkii ku heshiiyay in aad Bariira iyo Bootaan u kala bixisaan.

Adoo xasuustaada la mushaaxaaya, iyagna ay u jedaan kaliya wajigaaga is badbadalaya iyo mashquulka ay maskaxdaadu gashay, ee aad neeftood celiso mooyo wax kale iska-wayday, waata gabadhii  kugu toosiyay “Bootaan iyo Bariirada mataanaha ayuu ku waydiinayaa Bare”, ambabar kadib waadiga ugu jawaabay

“Adeer hadaan duruufi talin oo calafku adeegin, maanta Aabbohood saw ma ahadeen, oo ilma Barre looguma.


FARDOSA SULEIMAN (Photographer) is nineteen years old and from San Jose, California. She began taking photographs one year ago.

Instagram: @fvrdosa
Twitter: @fvrdosa

CABDILLAAHI RAAGE “SAYYIDKA” (Writer) oo lagu naanayso Sayyidka waa qoraa Soomaali iyo Carabi wax ku qora. Dagan Hargaysa, ku dhashay Boorama. Dhaqaalaha iyo Siyaasadda ka bartay jaamacadda Camuud. Daneeya arimaha Fikirka, Bulshada, Sooyaalka iyo dhaqandhaqaalaha Soomaalida.

Email: raage456@gmail.com

Dhiggeed Karroon iyo Dheeg Xasan

Hijabi

Ma ihi sidii hore, mana u dhawi sidaad igu taqaannay. Ma garan karo wax i beddelay. Qorshe la’aantaydan aad la yaaban tahay ma aha waxa keenay fikirkaygan bilaa xadka ah. Murugo ima hayso; mana faraxsani. Si baan ahay aanan ahaan jirin. Kollay waa iyada. Waxa sidan ii rog-rogay.

Dhabbada aan mari jiray markaan u socdo xagga dugsiga maanta waan beddeley. Marin aan marinkii ahayn iyo dariiq kale ayaan tallaabada ku xadaa. Gaabis uma dhalan mana aan habsaami jirin. Aniga ayaa wehelin jiray waardiyaha dugsiga aroorta hore ba. Munaasibado dugsigu ardayda u sameeyay waxa aan ku hantay kallahaadaydaa abaal marrinno dhawr ah. Laakiin maanta sidii aad igu taqaannay iyo si u dhow toonna ha iigu soo hagaagin.

Labo jeer, waa mar-mar e ayaa aan cantuugaa quraacda. Aalaa cantuugada danbe marka aan iyada xasuusto halkaa ay marayso ma dhaafto, haddii aan gacanta ku hayo na halkaan kasoo qaaday ayay si dhib yar ugu noqotaa. Waan soo baxaa, toos uma abbaaro dugsiga laakiin gurigooda ayaan si degganaan ku jirto ku sii maraa. Micnaha sida bukaanka ayaan u talaabsadaa. Bukaan socod ma ihi laakiin iyada ayaa iga dhigtay. Nasiib wanaaggayga subaxyada qaar waa aan la kulmaa, oo wadajir ayaannu ugu soconnaa xagaaa iyo dugsiga, halka subaxna ay soo yar habsaanto. Marka ay socodka igu wehelinayso waxa aan dareemaa farxad. Run ahaantii isma lihi waxa aad dareemi inta hadhay noloshaada. Waana dhab oo illaa hadda ma hayo mana helo. Ma arko mana dareemo rayn-rayntii iyo dhoollacaddayntii aan iyada la qaadan jiray.

Waxa aan iyada u hayay jacayl, xiiso iyo kalgacal aan xad lahayn laakiin waxa igu adkayd u sheego. Oo haddan u sheego waxa i bog dillaaciyay ee aan yartan u hayo ma gefbaa?! Maalin aannu ka wada qayb gelaynay munaasibad aniga, iyada iyo wiil kale oo soo kallahi jiray ayaa nala saaray bas. Anaga oo u raacnay goobtii munaasibaddu ka dhacaysay. Intii aanu baska saarnayn xageeda waxa iga xigay wiilkii kale. Waxa aan u dhiibay aleen [telephone] aan ugu qoray codsi ah in uu isoo beddelo. Ina rag damac iyo dacar midina ka ma dhammaato waa tii la odhan jiray e is adkayn xoogaa ah ka dib waa uu iga yeelay codsigii. Lix sano ka hor ayaa ay ahayd, waan la fadhiistay. Haa, oo waliba waa ay sheekaynaysay. Farxad, muxibbo iyo kalgacayl ayaa saaqay guud ahaan Jidhkayga. Malahayga aan is idhi iyada ayaa wadatay.

Maalin dhawayd nin ayaa lahaa “Haddii aad rabto in aad illowdo qof aad jeceshahay dil rejada oo jooji naawilaadda”

Cirku waa yar madow, cadceeddiina wali may dhicin. Casaan indhuhu jeclaysanayaan iyo daruur ayaa qariyay qayb ka mid ah cirka. Eedaan ayaa kusoo dhacaya dhagahayga, inkasta oo maanku ku xiiqay xasuusteeda haddana qalbigu u sheego dareenkaaga ayaa uu cod aad u hooseeya igu leeyahay. Salaaddii maqrib waa aan tukaday, wax aan tukaday se garan maayo, laakiin in aan iyada qaraaco ayaan ku hayay lubiga.

Dhiirranaan ah inaan banaanka usoo saaro waxa iga dhex guuxaya ma lihi. Inta aannu dharaarti wada soconno sheeko igu ma yara oo ma ihi nin u dhashay aamusnaanta, laakiin u tebi oo u sheeg jacaylkaaga sarbeeb ahaan iyo badheedh midna ma awoodo. Go’aan baan gaadhay ah in nin aannu saaxiib nahay i metalo; macnihii uu aniga iskakay dhigo. Qorshe ayaannu dhignay in uu isagu aleenka kala hadlo isaga oo codkiisa hoos u dhigaya anigana isu kay ekaysiinay si aanay u dareemin kadibna uu u sheego wax kasta oo aan iyada u hayo. La isbariidi una bandhig dareenka jacayl ee aan u hayo iyo beer-nugaylkaygii. Aqbashay oo la isfahan. Habeenkaana si wanaagsan kollay iyadu u seexatay.

Rayn-raynta midhihii ka soo baxay wadahadalkaa habeenka kama seexan, ma aan ladin wax hurdo ahna ma aan hawaysan. Inkasta oo xaggeeda sida uu qalbigu ileeyahay ay faraxsanayd si fiicanna u seexatay ma garanayo in uu been sheegayo e. Hiirtii waaga ayaa aan u baxay masjid, ka soo noqday. Deg-deg u xidh-xidhay una baxay dugsigii.

Xishood ayaa ila soo darsay, madaxayguna dharaartaa hoos ayaa uu ahaa. Wax ma dhigan mana aan daymoon baraha xaggiisa. Sidii ayaan kaga imi maalintaa dugsiga. Caado waxa noo ahayd in anaga oo lammaane ah kasoo rawaxno dugsiga. Laakiin dharaartaa kaligay ayaa jalaskaba ka horeeyay.

Talo iskuma kaa sheegto. Bila aadankuna uur-ku- baalle ma aha. Iimay sheegin in laacan aan arkayo uu jar dheeri ka hooseeyo. Aayar baa si yar oon dhib lahayn, hadal yar oo aan iyada dhibayn ay iigu sheegtay in la guursan doono. Waliba waxay ii raacisay in sida ugu dhakhsaha badan loo soo dooni doono.

Arrin ka weyn noloshayda ma arkin warkaasi. May ii sheegto mar hore go’aan ayaa aan gaadhi lahaa?! Oo ma qof aad jeclaataa go’aan laga gaadhaa. Adduunyadu waayo badanaa oo werwer iyo walaac badanaa. Maalin dhawayd nin ayaa lahaa “Haddii aad rabto in aad illowdo qof aad jeceshahay dil rejada oo jooji naawilaadda.” Inkasta oo aanan caloosha ka saari karayn hadana waa aan ku qasbanahay in aan illoobo. Kalmad aan meel halkeera ah maalin ka maqlay ayaa aan iyadana ku odhanayaa. “Nasiibkaygaa i nacaseeyaye, noolaada adiga iyo ninkaaguba.”


HIMILO DARWISH (ARTIST) is a 23 year old business student. She has been drawing since she can remember. Her artwork currently revolves around her identity as a Muslim, Somali, Black woman living in the UK. She resides in London.

Instagram: @dazmyart

CADNAAN MAXAMUD AXMED (Author) resides in Hargeisa, and graduated from high school this year. He is originally from Burao.

 

Retribution

My last few months as a citizen of the country were spent in an old industrial factory only about a mile from the southernmost edge of the border. Every day I would arrive to work at six in the morning and leave at six in the evening. I had a trusted friend there who would tell me about how other people escaped and helped me formulate the last details of my own Tahriib act.

A Submission 35 - Asha Nooh

Where I come from, no one ever gets their way. My life has been extremely lucky, but not one without sacrifice. Nothing but hatred comes from that wretched land; it barely qualifies as a nation. A false democracy permeates the unknowing atmosphere. Each and every year, the people democratically vote for their dictator; the only name on their ballots. He then continues to strip away civil rights, sanctify enslavement and puts his needs ahead of “his” people’s. It is amazing how this level of suppression is able to exist in the world. Even with such an air-tight seal on the country, government bodies around the planet have caught wind of the barbaric laws that exist there, and the crimes against humanity that they bring. The country’s motto was basically: No one in, no one out! I am one of the few who got out.

The words: “ALL CITIZENS MUST BAND TOGETHER FOR THE GOOD OF THE REPUBLIC” are plastered in every direction one can look. My government would attempt to use propaganda to maintain their hold on the population, and only use brute force on those who decided to take action. We were being persuaded that we were on the “good” side, that everyone else is going to come invade soon and we must be ready. Nationalism is a funny, but powerful thing. People tend to agree that the side they’re on is the best no matter what. To this day, I am thankful that I was able to see through the veil of lies.

I was orphaned at a very young age. When I was 15, I began work. My many odd jobs allowed me to see the cracks that the system was built upon. There were people everywhere who hated their lives. They were forced to live through hard labor with no benefits because it was for “the good of the people,” all while seeing one man reap the benefits. At 18, my boss casually mentioned someone escaping the country. Over the next two years, that comment snowballed into a plan. As an unskilled worker, I had time to think while I worked in the mines, or in the fields or in the factories while I mindlessly completed my day’s task. It was not until last year that I set it in motion.  

My last few months as a citizen of the country were spent in an old industrial factory only about a mile from the southernmost edge of the border. Every day I would arrive to work at six in the morning and leave at six in the evening. I had a trusted friend there who would tell me about how other people escaped and helped me formulate the last details of my own Tahriib act.

With excitement I took one last look at my home and stepped into the water.

In order to leave, one has to physically cross the border. Obviously right? Well not quite. No planes go in or out, or cars, trucks or trains. The only way out was by foot and it was a long walk. The border was in the middle of an open plain with a body of water running along the side and not getting spotted by the literal thousands of guards patrolling the area while crossing the plain is the most difficult thing possible but I knew just how to get around it.

At this point, you might be wondering why more people weren’t leaving. Why my friend in the factory wasn’t joining me on my adventure. This is one of the most barbaric parts of living there. Your family and friends will all be punished for your crimes, including fleeing the country. Luckily for me, I had no one close to me. I moved around all my life and never made attachments. This is why I consider myself lucky.

Waking up extremely early, I started to do what I have always dreamed. There was a tiny creek that ran out into the river that stretched the open plain in my backyard. My brilliant plan was to swim to my freedom. Instead of meticulously creating a hatching a scheme to stealthily sneak around through the line of sight of the guards, I have been practicing holding my breath.

With excitement I took one last look at my home and stepped into the water. Once I was in, there was no way back, only forward. I swam beneath the surface for as long as I could in order to minimize my visibility. Every second my head was exposed to the air would increase my chance of getting caught. My determination drove me through. Swimming through that lake took almost two hours, and was the single hardest thing I have ever done, but I have not regretted it for a second.

Eventually, I made it to the other side. I ditched everything but my suitcase and ran like hell. Not once did I stop; I felt as if I were being chased even though every time I looked behind me no one was there to return my gaze. Once I made it to civilization, people realized where I had come from and wanted to hear all about me. This is the moment that I realized that exposing the conditions that I grew up in, and helping my people break the shackles of oppression is my next challenge. This is why I am sharing my story. I seek retribution upon those that have done me and my country wrong.


ASHA NOOH (Photographer) is based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She captures spaces around her with a focus on Landscape Photography in her hometown and other cities. She uses photography as a way to escape the busy day and to express herself. She is working on expanding her craft into film and graphic design.

TIMIRO CAABI (Author) is a proud Somalilander artist, born and raised in Hargeisa. He wants to pursue a degree in architecture with minors mathematics and urban education policy. He wants to eliminate the gender inequality that plagues our education system, and believes such inequality to be setback for prosperity of the country. He wishes to use his gifts and talents to help his society.