Berlin mon amour, migrant dilemmas

as they do in Romania, a pig probably has to be slaughtered.

the question is in the choice of pig.

some good candidates are pride, identity, comfort, psychological defences, love, money, career, or perhaps home, childhood; the past, the future, memories, or hopes.

it’s a good menu.

apparently slaughtering nothing leads to nothing to eat in the long run.

the realisation of one’s own mortality helps with inflicting mortality on ideas, attachments, even material objects and resources. it helps with eating meat when your health demands it.


i’m not sure what the choice is.

if there is a choice.

i don’t want to see my face in black*, i don’t want to hate myself for coming home to the darker side and having innocents witness it, who for the most part don’t know what to do with it. i don’t know what to do with them if they have nothing to say.

do i need to surround myself with people who understand?

good luck on that mission.


the choice is, probably, can i let one child live at the cost of letting another die. mashallah it’s metaphorical children. a child of attachment to language, home, to a self that was me. that was the alive part of me while the external parts went crazy in a place that had a more moderate climate but was far too cold and smelled like plastic.

can you have a core self if you lose your language and home? well, i see people do it. they preserve other aspects of themselves, through transitions, i guess. maybe they are more robust, or maybe they weren’t attached in the first place. maybe they were crossing borders to run away from that stuff. it doesn’t seem to wrench them to lose it. or perhaps they left at an age at which they already knew who they were, more or less.


Berlin, usually warm and open.

this time i ventured further out and encountered

i’m not sure what i encountered, but apparently my nose keeps bleeding for days. (nobody beat me up thank God.) i wonder if it’s from walking too much in crowds. or if it’s from listening to a language that was the ice wall between me and others, from others who were cold. slightly cold. i’ve perhaps learnt to deal somewhat with those who are cold – they come in all nationalities. i know some warm up over time. they don’t just throw themselves in and out there like i can, not really minding how much blood is shed because hey, there wasn’t any hope of remaining whole in the first place.

i can sometimes deal with the language. when two Syrians ask me which way to cycle cross-country on junk bikes to see their friend in the other temporary accommodation. with that Turkish woman passing me the train ticket she bought erroneously. perhaps with that German guy who refused the system and lived in the forest until his girlfriend put him on government aid and into a job. for perhaps 2 minutes.

10 minutes at a table in a nice cafe with richer and colder people, and my nose bleeds.

ready in imagination and emotions to drop my belongings, plans, ambitions and walk towards any border on foot. (except the Austrian one.)


for now using the autistic method of listening to old songs in a loop and rocking back and forth until movement replaces thought.



*this piece is about re-visiting Germany after an odd immigrant childhood there and decades of subsequent nomadism. related pieces on the same theme are Iron Curtain 2018 and Crumbling the Berlin wall.


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