In The Dark

Writing in the dark has always had this great effect on writing. Looking into it and after all these years I find myself adapting very well to it learning new ways to make the most out of it. Thinking about it, having a power cut, say, for eight hours isn’t a great thing honestly because eight hours is way too much for anyone to endure yet one always manages to make the most out of the power cut. It’s true that not everything can be done during a power cut but when learning how to make the most of it, however, shapes and reforms you to the person that can absolutely seize every second that passes like that.

Regardless to the fact that I have written many posts in the bathroom -during a power cut of course- has been a collection of the best moments in the past year. I know some of you might have tried that -at least writing or doing something productive in the bathroom- has reflected a great outcome regardless of how and why. I am not saying that writing in the bathroom during a power cut is the best thing that can ever happen to a writer or a writer-to-be but to me, writing in the dark -regardless of where- is when I could see my words glow.

I know you would be laughing at me for writing about such a thing but as you already know, I don’t just write for the sake of writing or because I am too bored and I have nothing else to do so I just open a blank page and start writing without thinking or regardless of what and why I write. I write for a reason. I have always had, and always will. It’s a promise I have made to myself.

Spending some time alone in the dark leaving you with nothing to do but start at the wall, the ceiling or the floor, or maybe some object on your desk or somewhere else gives you a great chance to think. Not having Internet or TV -and no 3G on your phone- truly disconnects you from the world lying behind the walls or the screen. Not thinking about what’s lying there makes you think of what’s on hands.

Light a candle and make a cup of coffee and go through the photos you have. Remember the good old days with loved ones, great people you spent years with who had to move to a different country far away from where you are or people who once had a great share of your life but now reside in a better place. In heaven.

If you are not into that, or doing that might bring you to tears, which is actually good for both your eyes and heart, go through old text messages between you and a good friend of yours, someone you wholeheartedly miss or someone whose shadow is what remains in your life and read all the texts from the very beginning. This could either bring you to tears or draw a bright smile from ear to ear leaving a space for your teeth to shine brightly reflecting the light the candle makes. Remember the good times you once had with this person. Think of all what you and they have done to one another and how good life was once. Or just think of what is written here and there and smile, frown, or cry.

If you are not into either, just grab a book and start reading. During a power cut, everything is calm and the whole universe around you is just silent. Hearing the candle melting down slowly, the sound of the candle fire, your calm breaths, your stomach growling telling you it’s time to eat since you haven’t eaten anything for hours or even the sound of your finger running on each and every paper keeping your eyes on track as you read. You can hear your own voice, or imagine hearing someone else’s voice narrating to you, adding your own sound effects that you and you alone can hear as you imagine yourself seeing all what’s happening. Like if reading these words is actually a spell being casted leaving the effect of their magic change what you see in your mind. Doing things will greatly improve your reading experience and you will reach a point where you anticipate the power cut to enjoy another read of the book.

On the other hand, spending the time all alone in the dark can dramatically affect your behavior. In darkness, sadness and depression lie. In darkness they grow and silently crawl into your heart making you the depressed and sad person you have never been. Living like this can be a killer. It can kill your hope and happiness and leave you with not a single good feeling. If you ever feel like that, try doing anything of what I have mentioned previously. If all fails, seek good company and you’ll find joy and happiness but make sure you pick good company. Someone you at least trust enough to let your depression and sadness out for in case you wanted to talk about it and let it off your chest.

Nader K.

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About Nader Elkhuzundar

Nader Elkhuzundar is a commentator on Palestinian affairs and Co-founder of Beyond Compromise (www.beyondcompromise.com). Elkhuzundar occasionally freelances for The Guardian, International Business Times, and others. He's a social media enthusiast and tech savvy with particular interest in new technologies and analytics, and enjoys reading over Arabic coffee and dark chocolate.
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7 Responses to In The Dark

  1. Katecork says:

    I love this piece, just love it.

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  3. 48Refugee says:

    Beautiful!
    I feel like my body is programmed to want a shower every time the electricity goes out… as if showers in Gaza are not difficult enough, having to heat water on the stove and pour it over your body one cup at a time makes it even worse! Next time I get the chance, I’ll try to distract myself with one of your suggestions instead 🙂
    Great post!

    • Nader K. says:

      Thank you! I’m very pleased to know you liked this one. Frankly, I had to shower like this during Cast Lead. It was something I’ve never tried in my life. But the cause wasn’t fun at all.

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