I'm back home at last, but still a bit confused as of where I am. To keep up with this sentiment of being both here and there at the same time, I publish another version of a text on Jerusalem. For as my Swedish-speaking friends have seen, I wrote a couple of texts while I was there. I translated the first one of them into English a little more than a week ago, but I failed to publish it. As English isn't my native language, it's not like reading the original, but here - on demand - is The Capital of Fear:
Jerusalem is not a city
it’s a war zone
the machine guns
revealing peoples’ fear for each other
Seen as a capital by two nations
but as a matter of fact a capital of one, undived nation
the Nation of Fear
It’s in the eyes of every Jerusalemite
the badly hidden fear for The Other
walking up the stairs to his apartment
looking the other way
with two security guards in his service
very conscious that it’s only violence
and the threat of violence
that’s protecting him
as he’s chosen to live his life
as an occupier.
I see the fear in the eyes of Ahmed
called to a trial
threatened with six months prison
because four years ago
he was responsible for a group of children
where some spontaniously cried “Hezbollah”
In a city where History is alive
where every streetstone cries out political messages
Where Future exists
in dreams of a better life
or without Palestinians.
But where the Present is non-existant
otherwise than as a prolongation of history
or as waiting for the future to come.
In every second in this city
occupier and occupied interact
yet they act as if The Other doesn’t exist
Two parallell realities
is also a way of communication.
The occupied ignore the occupation soldiers
say that they’re here
will continue be here
that they’re not torn down
Childen play with their friends on the street
won’t let the occupying power
We won’t move
we won’t give in
every day the occupied are still here
is a victory.
a mental prison
also for the occupier
a mental ghetto.
I don’t see a smile on the face
of any Israeli in the old city of Jerusalem
Not on the soldiers
Not on the orthodox
Not on the settlers
waiting for the day
when they don’t need to meet
the eyes of the occupied any more.
The occupier is watching the occupied
through the lens of a surveillance camera.
I enter Israel
Twenty meters downstairs
in a shopping arcade
into another world.
I find two things tn West Jerusalem
that I haven’t seen before -
and female Israelis.
Night in Jerusalem
barbecue on a roof
under the sky
a stone throw away from the Weiling Wall.
Young people singing, drumming, laughing
hour after hour
the energy never seems to disappear
life is an eternal wirveling dance
in the epicenter of the war zone.