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Poetry Muse: Yassin Alsalman + Text Messages: Or How I Found Myself Time Travelling
This weekend on Poetry Muse, we are joined by Montreal-based Iraqi hip-hop artist, activist, and professor Yassin “Narcy” Alsalman — author of a Text Messages: Or How I Found Myself Time Travelling. In our Q&A, Yassin shares how he started writing his collection, and how he meant it to be a confusing, sensory overload of a book.Yassin’s first collection speaks of the existential crises experienced by diasporic children of war before and during imperialism in the age of the Internet.
A Poem from Text Messages: Or How I Found Myself Time TravellingAncestor As your body enters the earth to be buried, I unearth the buried memories rising with you. As my grandfather lay in his own dementia, he would repeat a story to me. During his stint as Mayor of Basra, he experienced many colonial remnants and visits from diplomats checking the state of their long-lost colony, or so to speak. A certain British man would visit several times, and they would walk along the Shaat Al-’Arab talking and updating each other. He told me that he would tell the man of the fish in the water, how they counter each other and don’t face each other; they almost battle each other for survival in a big struggle for space. The British man looked down upon the water, with a smile. “That’s how we like it to be Jamal. That’s how we like it to be.” And he would repeat the story from the beginning again. And again. And again.
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