In Memory of Saad I

Story written by Saad El-Asha on Monday 17, September 2018

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A fictional biography I wrote four years ago. Short sketches on my imagined life and death.

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Three months before he died, I asked Saad - a man with whom I used to glean almonds and fruits in my mother's grandad-in-law's farmland when we were children, of course, and later on, a companion in the civil war - how I could write something about myself without being self-centered, self-conscious, low-browish and hollow? He replied, "Oh, boy! You're already on the wrong track!". I didn't know what he'd meant. I still don't. After he was killed in the war, I decided to write about him. It was my graduation project. I passed. My professor told me I didn't have to bother copying Hemingway and talk about nonsense that never happened. He knew something about writing and couldn't help but calm me down; almost all of the graduates wrote a one-page essay on the beauty of spring. Saad was once bitten on his heel by a giant female rat. He tried to kill her by stamping on her butt while she stumbled through the backyard of their house, carrying newly-made excrement in her tiny feet. Her heel was intact. All through the year he told everyone he'd been bitten by a rat on his foot. It was fun.

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    Ouch! That had to hurt!