THE HALF REVOLUTIONARIES BY YUSUF IDRIS* "At night when the world is empty but for him who mourns his loss..", sung Abbas. He wasn't mourning. But he didn't have that tem- porary feeling of pleasure that comes with a job well done. He was lost. It's important to know where you're going. Even if you have problems on the way, the important thing is how you deal with them. Ambiguity can be dispelled sometimes with a single word. On the other hand, it only takes a few minutes for everything to be turned upside down when night comes and you don't know where you're going and who you'll find there. You're left alone in darkness and uncertainty, and nightfall becomes something alien, as if the sun has been struck blind, or the world swallowed up by a monster. The firm ground of daytime, instead of just changing colour at your feet as it usually does at night, becomes a sea, vast, dark and uneasy, lit up here and there by patches and flashes of brightness from its lighthouses and harbours. "At night when the world is empty but for him who mourns his loss...", droned Abbas's voice, chasing
Journal of Arabic Literature – Brill
Published: Jan 1, 1991
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