“When we choose to love we choose to move against fear-against alienation and separation. The choice to love is a choice to connect-to find ourselves in the other.”
As a war narrative enveloped in magic, love, and hope, The Baghdad Clock adds depth to the burgeoning genre of postcolonial Iraqi novels.
“Compassion is an unstable emotion. It needs to be translated into action, or it withers. The question is what to do with the feelings that have been aroused, the knowledge that has been communicated. If one feels that there is nothing “we” can do—but who is that “we”?—and nothing “they” can do either—and who are “they”?—then one starts to get bored, cynical, apathetic.”
“Siddhartha said: ‘What could I say to you that would be of value, except that perhaps you seek too much, that as a result of your seeking you cannot find.'”
“So instead of giving way to despair, I took the way of active melancholy as long as I had strength for activity, or in other words, I preferred the melancholy that hopes and aspires and searches to the one that despairs, mournful and stagnant.”
“Happiness,” Woolf writes, “is in the quiet, ordinary things. A table, a chair, a book with a paper-knife stuck between the pages. And the petal falling from the rose, and the light flickering as we sit silent.”