Thursday, December 4, 2008

Dedicated to Juweleriettalessa

I just finished a book that has exactly 500 pages, which is pretty cool, and after the last period on the last page, the author dated and addressed it, as though the whole book had been a journal entry, which I liked.

It's called The Famished Road by Ben Okri, a Nigerian author.

Right away when I started reading the story, it reminded me of my baby sister, Jweeleurietta, and if any part of it can be true, then she is also an abiku. I'm going to copy an excerpt: Section Two, Book Seven, Chapter eleven: (Julia, I'll bring you the book when I visit soooooon)

The spirit-child is an unwilling adventurer into chaos and sunlight, into the dreams of the living and the dead. Things that are not ready, not willing to be born or to become , things for which adequate perparations have not been made to sustain their momentous births, things that are not resolved, things bound up with failure and with fear of being, they all keep recurring, keep coming back, and in themselves partake of the spirit-child's condition. they keep coming and going till their time is right. History itself fully demonstrates how things of the world partake of the condition of the spirit-child.

There are many who are of this condition and do not know it. There are many nations, civilisations, ideas, half-discoveries, revolutions, loves, art forms, experiments, and historical events that are of this condition and do not know it. There are many people too. They do not all ave the marks of their recurrence. Often they seem normal. Often they are perceived of as new. Often they are serenewith the familiarity of death's embrace. They all carry strange gifts in their souls. They are all part-time dwellers in their own secret moonlight. They all yearn to make of themselves a beautiful sacrifice, within this life, setting the matter ready for their true beginnings to cry into being, scorched by the strange ecstasy of the will ascending to say yes to destiny and illumination.

I was a spirit-child rebelling against the spirits, wanting to live the earth's life and contradictions. Ade wanted to leave, to become a spirit again, free in the captivity of freedom. I wanted the liberty of limitations, to have to find or create new roads fromthis one which is so hungry, this road of our refusal to be. I was not necessarily the stronger one; it may be easier to live with the earth's boundaries than to be free in infinity.

Given the fact of the immortality of spirits, could these be the reason why I wanted to be born - these paradoxes of things, the eternal changes, the riddle of living while one is alive, the mystery of being, of births within births, death within births, birhts within dying, the challenge of giving birth to one's true self, to one's new spirit, till the conditions are right for the new immutable star within one's universe to come into existence; the challenge to grow and learn and love, to master one's self; the possibilities of a new pact with one's spirit; the probability that no injustice lasts for ever, no love ever dies, that no light is ever really extinguished, that no true road is ever complete, that no way is ever definitive, no truth ever final, and that there are never really any beginnings or endings? It may be that, in the land of origins, when many of us were birds, even all these reasons had nothing to do with why I wanted to live.

Anything is possible, one way or another. There are many riddles amongst us that neither the living nor the dead can answer.

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