In the footsteps of Adonis, the great Syrian poet of the diaspora


Is it Great Syrian poet And like many of his countrymen, artists or not, He lives in exile in ParisAway from the war that is a hopeless scratch on his heart. It’s Adonis, 93 years old. Your real name Ali Ahmed Saeed Esber. When he was in his teens, he already wrote verses of poetry which he sent to Syrian newspapers, until one of them published the first of the poems he had written until then. And since he was hiding under this pseudonym, Adonis, the paper put a notice on its front page so that a so-called ‘Adonis’ would appear in the newsroom. They wanted to meet him, and asked him to write more. He appeared there, surprising everyone with the poetic wit with which he He made it, and he remained under this pseudonym.

in edition a bunch of his hair, aduñada, which was introduced recently International Book Fair in Guadalajara, MexicoWhere the culture of the Arab world was called, its translators (Treno Cruz and Jaafar al-Aluni, his grandson) say that this name that often sounded like Possible Nobel Prize The poet chose it because it is a nickname that is “neither Arab nor Muslim” and “rooted in the ancient myths of the eastern Mediterranean.” This means, since he was born with the name Adonis, his “third birth, the moment of his rupture and his opening to the world.”

The book, which had a huge showing at the largest literary festival in the Spanish language, was published by Vaso Ruto. It is, say its prefaces and translators, the result of the “lucid and inspiring” research that Adonis has pursued since those years when he was a faceless teenager and later a pseudonym that is now more than a proper name. According to Cruz and Aloni, this anthology book “plays an integral and useful role in all of his work. In it, he managed to express and synthesize something essential Powerful writing that can change our outlook and revitalize our lives. Destroying the obstacles that stood in the way of our history, our memory, our lives and our existence & rdquor ;.

It is “a journey into the bowels of history, the poet and man in this contemporary world which has become a market without scruples or borders, as he himself points out & rdquor; in the anthology published by Vasu Ruto.”Adonaida & rdquor.Their interpreters also say: “He takes us to the very core of exile and shows us, in a perverted twist in our nature, how it imposes itself as the chief source of our freedom & rdquor;

Dressed as a civil friar, in the clothes typical of a French gentleman who had not lost his Syrian manners, Adonis walked through the Guadalajara fair with the elegance of someone who carried within and in his eyes the angry grief of someone who was. Expelled from the city. Market crazy To live again in another form of contemporary madness, the city. That wound that his hair talks about is not in his warm face, as his smile accompanies him, like his grandson Al-Awni, who lives in Madrid, where he works as a translator and runs the magazine. banipal, is dedicated to modern Arabic literature and was established two years ago “by the individual efforts of a couple formed by the Iraqi writer Samuel Chamoun and the British publisher Margaret Obank ” …

We asked the grandson, and he answered in writing, what it was like to live with Adonis & mldr; He read it from a young age, “I have memorized a large part of his poetry, fascinated by it A mysterious scent that may be the scent of legends and childhood, of light, air, water, plants, herbs and flowers, The smell of the place we both came from, Syria, the smell of the labor pains she had endured for more than ten years.

At the Museum of Anthropology in Mexico, my grandfather conjured up his friend Octavio Paz, I saw tears in his eyes. Perhaps he saw in it an image of his future body & rdquor;

Alouni, journalist, translator and grandson of Adonis

It was seen in Mexico, among themselves and with the many fans who went to listen to him, that this encounter with Adonis is “a free-spirited, eternal and tireless conversation about Arab concerns, problems, travel, death, cities, identity”. negation & rdquor ;. Aloni visited with his grandfather the Museum of Anthropology of Mexico, which he directed Juan RulfoAnd there my grandfather summoned his friend Octavio PazI saw tears in his eyes. Perhaps he saw in it a picture of his next body.

Jaafar Alouni (left), grandson of Adonis, is also the translator of his grandfather’s latest work. / waive it

With the death of his friends, Al-Awni said about his grandfather’s current position, “New and deep wounds arise… From room to room, Adonis read heaven and earth in one book. From drawings, statues, masks, and murals, languages ​​arose whose drawings and my language I questioned and took to all parts of the world & rdquor; .

At a certain moment the grandson asked the grandfather:

-Adonis, what travels to you after you have exhausted the suns and their darkness and their lamps?

Adonis replied:

– In flight, outer space is nothing more than an excuse to see the inner space and assert oneself, individuality, that individualism that Islam and monotheistic religions in general nullify. Seeing the invisible is a prerequisite for better seeing the visible.

The grandson also asked him about his and the other’s limits. What is the city and what are its borders? Who are you and what is your identity? This is what his grandfather told him:

Travel reveals vast unknown realms within us. As we enter them, we discover more about our unknowns. Our barriers will change. We understand more of this mobile, mysterious and formidable exile in which we live and whose horizon we remain wherever we go.

“And banishment, Adonis?”

It is not the exile of space, nor the political exile, it is that feeling that controls all creators, regardless of their language, when they feel the presence of A huge chasm between their creative work, what they really want to express, and reality or what they really express. This is the true denial of the Creator, his existential exile, when at the end of his life, after filling cities with adventures and enduring the toil of years, he feels that he has achieved absolutely nothing. In this way, exile in its political sense becomes superficial and easy in the face of this existential exile that swallows the depths of every human being.

Before a hall full of readers, Adonis spoke with the same philosophical simplicity. And before a group of journalists, he descended into the zone of reality summoned by us professionals who ask questions about what is happening. This is a summary of the questioning and answers given by the Syrian poet. Q: What are the desires that move you day in and day out?

R was found. Thank you for this intimate question. Time is the space of desires. Now, at my age, I have given up my personal desires and only hope that new relations will arise on the horizon: freedom, culture and democracy for all peoples and all nations. In this sense, I want this time to be a time of multiculturalism, collaboration and creativity. my intimate desires and mldr; I’ll leave them to myself, thanks.

Q: Do you think the public is obsessed with one fact?

R was found. Many times they take my verses out of context, which is why it is so difficult to explain them later. But okay: I criticize the city and its citizens. In the same way that the city is built, it also perverts the relationship with nature. Man was born with nature, with clouds, fields and mountains, and if a person loses his relationship with nature, he loses himself. So, the deep struggle of humanity today is, precisely, the relationship of man to nature. Personally, despite my belonging to the city, I have always preferred the countryside.

Q: What do you think of the reaction that women are exposed to in Iran and the oppression they suffer from?

R was found. This question must be understood in context: the position of women in the three monotheistic religions, Judaism, Christianity and Islam, is secondary. When we talk about Iran, we must remember this and we must demand the release of women from those religious chains. We should also talk about male tyranny in Iranian society. Or, well, all over the world. This means: when talking about Iran, we must not forget the suffering of women in Palestine, the United States or China. Because the submission of women in societies also means the submission of men.

The poem is the only place where I feel absolutely free, the only place where I control myself and my will.

Adonis, poet

Q: After more than 70 years of writing poetry, how do you define it today?

R was found. Poetry and writing in general are very important to me. The poem is the only place where I feel absolutely free, the only place where I control myself and my will. I want to convey this feeling to the reader, so that the reader also feels the freedom that I feel. Poetry is the air of this world, it is the sun of this existence. Through poetry we renew ourselves and see ourselves.

Q: After writing your autobiography, how do you describe your poetic experience?

R was found. The poetic experience is always an opening to the horizon, life and thought. Poetry teaches us that human identity is an open path to this horizon. Poetry opens up to everything, to change, to transformation.

Q: How are myths and traditions transformed through poetry?

R was found. Time, from a mathematical point of view, is numbers, seconds and minutes. But time in creative moments is something else. When we read Homer’s book at school, we read it as a historical document, but we feel his poetic world here and now among us. That is why I say that poetry has no time. Poetry is not part of the time. On the contrary: time is part of poetry. The themes were always the same: love, death, existence, mldr; But if we go back to the poems written in ancient Mesopotamia today and compare them with the poems that exist today, you will notice that the earlier poems were more important than the poems of today. The question is how he viewed the world and people at that time and how he views them today. Technologies invented today, like planes bombing people’s homes, are not an advance of intelligence. For me, the farmer who works in the fields is smarter. What is in the National Museum of Anthropology of Mexico is also more important, in my view, than everything that is produced in modern Mexico.

Man is the one who can bring about change. In this sense, hope always reigns in man and in the future the road is open to infinity.

Adonis, poet

Q: Why, after seeing so much violence, does hope always prevail in your work?

R was found. Because after all, man is the center of the universe. Man is the one who can bring about change. In this sense, hope always reigns in man and in the future the road is open to infinity. So: if the base of the universe is man, then always have hope.

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Q: Who speaks in the play Adonis?

R was found. The poet speaks in my poems. A poet who does not start from emptiness, but composes verses from what exists in this universe. The poet cannot talk about the future if he does not know the past. Because the past, for all its obstacles, always leaves us the best in inheritance. Example: Franco ruled for a long time, but today who lives among us? Lorca.

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