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Ibrahim Mālik

The Culture of Peace and Co-Existence – Translated by Jamal Assadi, with Assistance from Michael Hegeman and Michael Jacobs

Jamal Assadi

This selection of Ibrahim Mālik’s short stories and poetry brings together an illustrative compendium of his works, which propose a genuine portrait of the numerous predicaments, concerns, apprehensions, and coercions from which the Arab community inside Israel suffers. To a great extent, these difficulties are currently the lot of many ethnic groups and communities in the Middle East and many other parts of the world. General readers of this work will take pleasure in exploring a different culture, while specialists interested in Arabic literature will find new and bountiful grounds for academic study.
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Yara: The Smart Girl


Yara was a smart and beautiful girl; she is the daughter of a neighbor. We-my wife and I- loved her so much that we are sure she was innately aware of it. When she was a pupil in the fifth grade, used to visit us often, and we were as pleased with her as if she had been our own granddaughter. In fact, we needed her precociousness, which brought back to us some of what we had lost with the progression of years and the seemingly sudden appearance of our own agedness. We had lost any sense of childhood with its inquisitiveness, truthfulness, and mischievousness.

One day she came to our home, delighted and amused, as always. She said, “I wrote a short story in which I speak painfully about the death of a bird.” Then, she asked me to look at it and read it over.

It read, “Yara once heard a bird singing sadly. She approached him and carried him gently in her hands. The poor bird had received the blow from a cat’s paw, which had damaged his wings. Luckily, he escaped the cat’s paws miraculously, but he lost the ability to fly. He lost the most precious gift he had: the ability to fly freely. She asked him ← 42 | 43 → about his name! He said, ‘They call me the beloved Coco!’ Moved, Yara introduced herself to him.

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