Radhia Chehaibi in “a Digital Path of the Soul:” Poetic Texts with a Prose Flavour and Vice-versa.
In this Digital Path of the Soul writer Radhia Chehaibi labeled her pen’s bleeding /Poetic Texts/. By doing so she removes the quality of absolute poetry with all its trends from her letter, and she also distances it from the absolute prose. Her writings in this Path take its formal aspect from the inkwell of the poetic-prose writing, putting the reader in letter paths of reading with different dimensions placing him/her in mazes that oblige him/her to run after a difficult poetics which its meters and rhymes were intertwined and its music was disarranged, making him/her be involved in other mazes with prose dimensions. So, he/she sometimes encounters poetry with its word flow, and he/she finds himself/herself swept away by the poetics of speech other times.
/Poetic Texts/ inside a digital path would be pure poetry if they were able to do so, despite the waning of the dream when the past tense verb intended to want to feminise the writer with the taa’ (the feminine marker in Arabic) of accusation. But which accusation is it? Is it the accusation of writing in general? Or is it the accusation of the identification, according to a premeditated and preconceived plan, with drawing in a different way landmarks for the soul in this digital path, and in the era of the digital letter, the digital word, and the digital emotion. But does the digitality that presses the writer/who is content/ plead for following a different style that we Arabs are not familiar with, at the level of the dialectics of dealing with poetry and prose? Besides, does the use of digital terms as introductory themes, and as a gateway to the pulse permit them to place the reader in a poetic-prose path?
It is a different experience in wooing the letter that might seduce the reader to carry on or might negatively provoke him/her. Besides, it might reduce him/her to a mere digital reader that is running with all his/her linguistic weight and cognitive faculties after a pure poetic pulse inside poetic texts that insisted on riding the horseback of prose.
I found myself here in this paper obliged to stop at The Digital Path as a form of modern writing in our Arabic literature without taking the adventure of entering into the mazes of the soul—Radhia Chehaibi’s soul of writing itself, because the soul is hers, the pulse is hers, the sentiments are hers, and the emotions are hers. We might disagree with her as well as agree about the dimensions and contents of the texts, and this will not change anything. But we might discuss, in a deep way, the form of /poetic-prose/ writing which is included in this book which is covered by the blueness of the sky and its reflexion in the blueness of the sea water, and between them there is an image of a digital device with pallid features which behind it flows a white ray coming from a sun that is perhaps digital itself when it lost its roundness.
Originally appeared in Alwatanpresse.com 09/11/2011 by Mohamed Belghazi (A journalist and a poet from Morocco).
You can read the original text in Arabic here.
Translated from Arabic by Ali Znaidi.