Six Lions

Yasmine Musa in the Hypocrite Reader:

  1. It was the second month of lockdown and the spring stretched before me like Arabic ice cream. My dad announced that he would be out all day, so I put two tabs of acid in a water bottle and headed out to the garden. A perfect time to pretend to enjoy solitude and figure out the riddles of the universe. I pulled out a big picnic blanket, sat beneath the shade of a young apple tree and waited for the new blooms of the cactus flower to speak.
  2. Before Yusef left Berlin and went back to Beirut, he gave me Letters to a Young Poet by Rilke. In it, Rilke wrote that the solitary man must remember to see the plants and animals, “patiently and willingly uniting and increasing and growing not out of physical suffering but bowing to necessities that are greater than pleasure and pain and more powerful than will withstanding.” And that is the secret of sweetness, the young poet must realize. I read the lines over and over again that spring and did not understand what Rilke meant, which is why I took the acid.
  3. Bringing the acid to Palestine was Khalil’s idea. Because Khalil is my best friend from high school and I live in Berlin, it was difficult to say no. I took Khalil’s request as a divine calling and asked another friend to lead me on the path of finding a drug dealer.

More here.