"When Naguib Mahfouz was a boy, he tells us, two paths lay before him. There was the path of the literature he loved to read and write. He could take that path and become a distinguished author. There was also the path of the football he loved to play and the footballers he admired. He could take that, it was said, and become a member of the Egyptian Olympic football team."
"These two poems translated by Katharine Halls are small enough to carry in one’s palm; they utilise a mode of poetic witness attuned to distillation, frankness, and the startling force of an ending."
I don’t know when exactly the idea came to me: of building a castle like the ones I’d imagined when reading stories, or like the ones I’d seen in cartoons.
“One of the trickiest, most mysterious secrets of the Arabic language is the root h-l-m.”
"Bella felt she had several cats at once, and that the spirit of her cat was being continually rejuvenated, such that she could never guess what her cat would do next."
Cats have made themselves an essential part of human literatures.